ALTHEA HARPER FALL 2013
Remember Althea? She's done the project runway rounds and is gunning, of course, for recognition as a lead design talent with her own eponymous label. Her offsite show was a bit of a hassle to get to, given that things are so much easier traveling between showrooms and stages in Lincoln Center. But, made the effort, I did. And, while I hate to be snarky, ultimately I had to wonder why.
Althea had a starry night theme that felt thrown together. Loose shifts with gold belted waists, mildly sloppy looking prints in colors of the sky at dusk, and tops that included metallic star accents all felt juvenile. Huge tied-waist bows to close constructed blouses muddled the fit and shape of what could have, at least, been a fun casual outfit. Overall there seemed to be a disconnect between commercially viable and a desire to be artistic and slightly avant garde. The result was a collection that showed impressive overall cohesion, but fell off the mark in terms of being prescient, which it seemed to want to be so badly.
If I were Tim Gunn, still in touch with a former contestant (does he do that? IDK) I'd probably suggest going stronger on construction and tailoring, and focusing less on fabric and accessories.