Runway Review: Altuzarra Spring 2014

After a very constricted fall collection, Joseph Altuzarra let it all hang loose for next spring. What I've always admired about him as a designer was that he always manages to merge the superbly sophisticated with the raw sex appeal.

This may sound completely dumb, but I've always associated Altuzarra's work with really high thigh slits. On the runway they look, well let's just say it, hot but I'm guessing that they sew them up a little bit right before they hit the stores. So, now that you know that Joseph loves to design skirts, it's not a huge surprise he opened his show with a few gorgeous pieces. Unlike last season (sharp and black), this time they seemed very light and seemed casually wrapped around the models' waists. Knowing that Carine Roitfeld is Altuzarra's ultimate muse, it comes as no surprise that they were paired with slik blouses, a size too big for an extra shot of cool.

The entire collection had a Mediterranean feel. Most pieces would look perfect in lounges and resorts in Greece. It's great when a designer manages to take you there (mentally, of course) without showing one swimsuit.

When it comes to memorable pieces, the ones that stood out most for me were these gorgeous and modern takes on ponchos. Done in crisp white or cream, they just screamed easy luxury to me, and (I'm guessing) many of Altuzarra's devoted clients around the world.

The second half of the collection was much more city oriented. Smart cocktail dresses and skirts (both with thigh slits, obviously) were topped off by ornamental skinny jackets. It kind of seemed like the ladies came back from their summer vacation with some cool jackets as souvenirs (because only losers buy fridge magnets) and casually paired them with their city slicker dresses. I for one love the storyline.

Something that always evokes the proper spring/summer season are tassels - on everything! Altuzarra was the first designer this week who showed incredibly cool fringed leather dresses in midnight blue and smart black blazers with tassels on the sleeves.

Although there wasn't a proper eveningwear section, the pieces shown at the very end came pretty damn close. The common thread that was pure ease in dressing carried through to cocktail hour. Stunning skirts and dresses in various shades of precious metals were paired with simple T-shirts (so Carine, right?) for maximum effect.

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Photos from Style.com

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