Carolina Herrera Resort 2022
Carolina Herrera’s 40th birthday, the lifting of pandemic restrictions and – drumbeat – a new baby! Wes Gordon has a lot to celebrate, including his latest addition, Henry Eduard Arnhold-Gordon, born this week.
“The baby is very fashion conscious, he let me finish the remedy,” Gordon joked in a Zoom interview earlier this month.
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Of course, a sense of joy is at the heart of Herrera, never more than during the resort season, when the effervescence of the brand really shines. Gordon’s biggest contribution has been to bring the fancy dress party spirit into everyday life.
“My inspiration was to gather my two dozen closest friends and take them on an imaginary destination party… that’s all we needed,” said Gordon, who considered when designing the collection what a woman would travel in, explore the city in, have lunch on the beach, to what she would wear for a glamorous night out that ends with a barefoot dance at 4 a.m.
The result was a festive and easy wardrobe, with soft structure, trendy sleeves, bouncy ruffles and candy striped knits.
Surprisingly, Gordon has never done rose prints at Herrera, and her flowers certainly have juice, considering the online frenzy that occurred after Meghan Markle wore the brand’s red poppy-print dress during from the Global Citizen Vax Live concert last month.
For the resort, a bouquet of brush roses inspired by an antique gouache painting is used for a beautiful effect on a sun yellow puff-sleeve wrap dress. Meanwhile, a Warhol-look wood block, in striking red, blue, or yellow takes center stage on va-va-voom gathered sweetheart style with puffed sleeves, over the classic button-down shirt ensemble and Herrera’s prom skirt and more.
Gordon paid special attention to on-trend sleeves (they don’t go anywhere), rubbing and pleating them to a seam, or a shoulder-level ruffle held in place with an elastic. Other tops, in cotton or silk faille, had structured ruffles and an exposed shoulder.
Much of the collection was designed with scarves, worn on the head after Jackie O in Capri. A denim version is paired with a puff sleeve jacket and wide leg jeans, as well as an adorable candy pink striped sweater and red crochet striped shorts. “I love Ron Galella’s images of her living her life in a glamorous and relaxed way,” Gordon said of her Onassis days.
A popsicle-striped knit tube dress, worn with heavy white “Wilma Flintstone” pearls, and a delicate white crochet top and skirt set also spoke of 70s resort style. And easy leopard georgette palazzo pants, a matching tie-up shirt and scarf recalled another icon of American glamor – Elsa Peretti, a heroine of Ryan Murphy’s recent “Halston” series, whom Gordon, like everyone else in the fashion world, devoured.
The full recline disguise had a lightness, from the red organza puff sleeve dress dotted with hundreds of hand-cut organza flowers, to the dandelion strand of a strapless white organza dress with spiral ruffles and a single black grosgrain bow.
But eyes will be open for the first celebrity to wear Gordon’s black flamenco party pants, edged with a stiff faille ruffle and paired with a black halterneck top. It’s a riff on a look from Herrera’s first collection in 1981. As fun now as it was then.
Launch gallery: Carolina Herrera Resort 2022