“We’re finishing the year of nature as an inspiration for the main collections,” Lafayette 148’s Emily Smith explained at the presentation held inside the Standard Hotel on a very snowy morning. But it wasn’t about taking a walk through the woods or even traveling to the ocean; this season her team looked at the Rockefeller Guest House, the tiny glass house on 52nd street that was originally designed for Blanchette Rockefeller, who was twice president of the Museum of Modern Art, to entertain and house her collection of modern art. “I like to bring it back to New York,” Smith added. “The idea that you leave the busy city and come inside this house with beautiful wood paneling, beautiful glass walls and a big pond on the inside.”
The clothes, then, had a slight “entertaining at home” coziness, in pieces like a black fil coupe wrap coat with an abstract texture meant to mimic tree bark. It was tied at the waist with a thin wrap adorned with silver beads at the end. Or the casual boiled wool sweater and skirt matching set with a sort of fuzzy textural element that looked like tinsel but was instead inspired by the look of fallen leaves in a pond. Some of the coolest pieces were inspired by the house itself; like an opulently embellished skirt and short shift dress completely covered in metallic and clear paillettes that was inspired by the chrome tubing of mid-century modern furniture; or on the other hand of the spectrum, an elegant skirt suit in a tonal black jacquard with a subtle geometric pattern that mirrored the architectural plans of the house. As Smith went to walk me towards the mannequin wearing the suit, we looked up to see the actress Claire Danes getting her picture taken in the same suit. “Even better!,” Smith exclaimed.