NEW YORK, United States — There is nothing loud about the way Ashley and Mary Kate Olsen have built their modernist luxury label The Row. This morning, at a presentation in a cement-floor loft marked with chrome pillars, the designers once again eschewed the maximalist, all-frills leanings of the current fashion cycle. And yet, the clothes were rich-looking, whether it was a golden leather trench, a shimmering carbon-coloured floor-length fur, or a washed-satin gown with sleeves that ran far past the wrist.
While the designers did not leave show notes on seats or offer interviews, the runway’s cashmere work shirts, broadly cut overcoat in acid-wash black denim and triple-wrapped belts indicated that this collection was, at least in part, an exploration of utilitarianism. (Certain pieces were also delicately hand-embroidered with words like "dignity" and "unity": A political statement, to be sure, but in their own quiet way.) The strategically placed outsized tool pockets and topstitched flat boots, a refined take on Dr. Martens, added to the collection's plot.
Low-slung, mannish trousers paired with classic white shirting were exacting in their proportions, and illustrated what makes The Row so successful. Every piece is clearly worked, evaluated and reworked until it’s exactly right. A stealth effort, to be sure, but those who know, know.