In late breaking news, Carolina Herrera announced this was going to be her last runway show. She is stepping down from the artistic director role for her namesake company she founded in 1980 to make room for Wes Gordon, who has been working with Herrera, apparently preparing to take over the reins. Her future will not be apart from the company that she put so much of herself in, however. Moving forward, she will be the brand ambassador for the design house.

Her farewell collection was, if anything a bit whimsical for Herrera. A bit nostalgic of her house staples without any severity in the cuts or fabrics. The show opened with a few signature moments of classic white shirting with black skirts and pants that quickly turned to animal print.

Animal print! Carolina Herrera turned to animal print in her final collection. At age 79, it just goes to show, it’s never to late to evolve or do something you never thought you’d do. And I doubt Herrera ever thought she’d be delving into animal print. But she does take a more figurative approach with monotone lustrous fabrics over matte to create the spots.

From there, she went even further into whimsical with a red ostrich feather skirt with silver tinsel fringe, a similar styled cape, a half orange/half red dress (a trend we’re seeing on the runway this season), and a black cape covered in varying colored beaded circles. Ms. Carolina is getting playful.



PAUL HEWITT

And then we get into the pretty pretty. Classic silhouettes were slinky with rotating colored box pleats that moved beautifully. A fabulous sheer-sleeved magenta dress and similar toned sleek pant suit. Want, want, want. Sherbet hued rainbow tulle and chiffon pleat dresses are jaw-dropping moments of dreamy.

Her two final looks were in a nutshell, Carolina Herrera. The first, a stunning  off-the-shoulder red gown as well as a strapless white and blue awning stripe gown. Romantic and sophisticated.

But that wasn’t the end.  There was a finale walk with variations of the look that we all associate with this pillar of fashion. The white button-down with wide belts over flowing skirts – this time, richly hued taffeta ball skirts with of course, pockets. She may not be appreciated by all in this era of athleisure and modernist style, but I believe there’s a place for every design style, and the classic, sophisticated aesthetic of Herrera is beautiful. She will be missed.

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