When my adorable friend David Robbins from Genre Magazine invited me to join him at the Carlos Campos show, I was looking forward to a welcome break from womenswear with a full menswear show. Instead, we were treated to both, and it actually worked really well (sometimes when both are combined, it just seems disjointed). Held outside of the tents at the Altman Building on 18th Street, the scene we were greated with definitely reflected on the designer's Honduran roots...red lighting, thumping Latin music, and bold-faced names like Nole Marin, Eric Benet and Sean Paul in the front row.
Unfortunately, much of the new collection presented had a completely different feel to it. With models styled in severe wax-model makeup and slicked-back hair, they sort of resembled harsh East German pod-people...and matched many of the looks in the collection. The whole first part of the show gave us a palette of white, grey and a strange Caribbean blue, used in Members Only-looking jackets, boxy tops and vests, and pants & shorts that had pleating instead of back pockets (obviously only flattering on the boys with 28-inch waists!). Because of the slight androgyny of the whole show, the women's looks were very similar, but at least a bit more figure-friendly.
The middle and end of the show were a vast improvement, with a gorgeous orange-piped plaid used on sharp trench coats and men's and women's suits, sportcoats, pants & shorts. There was also a women's look of slouchy charcoal grey pants and a sexy white jersey top that I loved. One dress also jumped out...shimmery grey with cobalt blue trim and impeccable tailoring that would have worked directly from the runway to a party. I would have loved to see some more prints to wake things up, as well as a little - ok, a lot... - less influence from the '80's, but I also appreciated the singular point-of-view and perfect fit of each piece. Oh, and the styling...I would have gone for a little less der kommissar, a little more Gisele. Just saying.
L-R: David Robbins, Alison, Peter Sloane