The moment the first model stepped onto the runway of the Alexander Berardi Spring Summer 2011 Collection it faded and tarnished all memories of previous shows. Those beautiful, glossy shows of yesterday suddenly seemed like tattered fashion castoffs. This collection transformed the Lincoln Center Studio into a breezy, serene countryside. Berardi is just 23, and his collection brought the entire room to it’s feet.
On the designer’s feet were tattered sneakers, underneath a loose-fitting grey suit. As he came out to take his bows I couldn’t believe no one had ever mentioned how adorable and raffish he is, but his clothes are rather distracting. His disheveled appearance sweetly belied the tranquil glamour of his collection.
This collection was actually a collaboration with Jessica Jensen, who provided the bags, which only contributed to the beachy allure. The models wore side ponytails with sleek, glossy waves and understated makeup. Their faces were proud and WASPy, and I could see any one of them turning heads on the Hampton beaches. According to the press release, this collection “captures the mood of restless romance and eclectic chic.” It was inspired by the Godard film ‘Breathless’ and its gamine star, Jean Seberg and there were certainly elements of 60s ease. But, like many other collections this season, there was also an element of 30s Hollywood glamour: liquid satin and tuxedo blazers featured heavily, along with dramatic chiffon sleeves. Genie pants and espadrilles made the models seem as though we caught them on their way to the pool.