The Eye of the Storm: Oscar de la Renta Spring 2011 Runway Show

A dark cloud was slowly spreading over New York City early yesterday evening, however inside 583 Park Ave., it felt more like a perfectly sunny spring day. Set apart from the commotion of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week at Lincoln Center, the Oscar de la Renta Spring 2011 show took place inside a luxurious ballroom, complete with dome ceiling, a beautiful crystal chandelier and Roman-style columns.

And it’s not just the venue that makes the Oscar de la Renta show standout, the guest list too is first-class, comprised of the the crème de la crème of fashion’s elite like Vogue’s Anna Wintour and Lisa Love, Joanna Coles from Marie Claire, Joe Zee and Robbie Myers from Elle, celebrity stylist Rachel Zoe, and finally, the ultimate queen of New York style, Sarah Jessica Parker.

The first few minutes of the show radiated peony shades of pastel pink, dandelion yellow, pale  green and contrasting corals. How ironic that outside, Manhattan was experiencing one of the worst storms of the season. Next came looks featuring only the whitest whites and solid blacks that created a splendid yin yang contrast.

With all 62 looks in his Spring 2011 show, de la Renta managed to pay tribute to every major fashion trend of the past century. There were the voluminous sleeves from the ’80s, geometric prints of the ’60s, just-below-the-knee skirts from the ’40s and glittery rhinestones from the ’20s. There were stripes, polka dots, patterns, florals, embroidery, bows, sequins and everything in between. The collection also played around with new shapes as every length, strap and neckline, was purposefully constructed. Some styles hugged the feminine curves and cinched at the waist, while others branched out closer to the floor.

And as is typical for de la Renta, only the richest fabrics were used including natural silk, crinkled chiffon, lace, tulle and taffeta. Alligator strap sandals and satin pumps for graced the models’ feet and precious jewelry completed each look. A common theme was the chandelier crystal earrings that fittingly matched the lustrous chandelier that dangled over the runway.

The presentation ended with the striking shabby-chic silk green and pink carnation appliqué embroidered gown, followed by a grand finale that led the crowd into grandiose applause. Oscar the Great — he’s done it again.