by NICOLE PHELPS
Vera Wang is a lifelong Francophile. This season, she expressed her affection for the place via the exaggerated ruff collars and voluminous shoulder and sleeve treatments of the court of Louis XIV. The ruffs are removable and sold separately, but the puff sleeves aren’t going anywhere. These are clothes for exuberant, eccentric dressers and lovers of excess, despite the mostly black-and-white color palette. Proportion play is another fixation for Wang. If there was volume up top, as in the case of her macramé-lace baby doll dresses, the legs were left bare above towering platforms. She balanced ultrashort brocade shorts against layered torsos: capelets on top of pouf-sleeved blouses accented with peplums at the waist. The broderie anglaise gowns pooled on the ground but started off attenuated at the shoulder.
The Sun King isn’t trending this season; Wang is out on her own on this trip. Coincidentally, though, this collection has heavy-duty grommeting in common with Riccardo Tisci’s debut at Burberry. The metal rings gave a modern edge to a gauntlet-sleeved blazer that counted among the most viable pieces in the lineup. On the opposite end of the reality-fantasy spectrum, there was a pair of minidresses with outsized lace ruffs wrapping the arms at the shoulder like angels. They looked like something Lady Gaga could wear on the premiere circuit for A Star Is Born.