Monday, September 10, 2018

In the Market Report by Marilyn Kirschner

Let’s ‘Patch’ Things Up!

Ralph Lauren "Barrick" patchwork evening dress fall 2018
More info/purchase

Ralph Lauren’s terrific Golden Anniversary Show on Friday evening was ethnically diverse, multi-generational, and one for the ages. In attendance at the designing icon’s eclectic presentation was a similarly eclectic group of icons representing the worlds of fashion, film, publishing, news, music, and politics and included the likes of Bruce Springsteen, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, Robert de Niro, Graydon Carter, Anna Wintour, Anderson Cooper, and Kanye West. Whereas the presentations and formal shows which end on Wednesday evening are for spring 2019, Ralph’s was for fall 2018 and the collection is available online and in boutiques worldwide.

Among the many highlights and crowd pleasers (he showed both Collection and the sportier, more collegiate and colorful Polo Ralph Lauren) were the gorgeous patchworks, the origins of which date back to the time of Egypt’s great pharaohs. Designed by hand, every patchwork pattern—from the gowns to the handbags—is different. An intricate mix of rich fabrics, including velvet and print jacquard, the patch placement is highly considered. Each and every one is a piece of wearable art and a fine example of artisanal workmanship; a collectors’ item that will undoubtedly stand the test of time which is at the heart of what Ralph has done since day one.

Perhaps the most spectacular piece was the “Barrick” evening gown (refer to opening shot). Made by three master artisans, this handmade dress is comprised of 132 patches with eclectic zigzag stitches, showcasing an elaborate American flag patchwork design which justifies the price: $20,000.

Click images for full-size views:


The sumptuous ‘Myrian’ poncho worn by Kaia Gerber, is a divine patchwork of mixed fabrics and shearlings of different treatments embroidered together. It is handmade in Italy and available via their Reserve list for $24,000. For more information, call 212 434 8000.


As it turns out, there are many standout patchwork pieces (ready to wear and accessories) currently available in the market, from a range of designers. Some are from fall 2018 collections which were presented this past February, and others are one of a kind and vintage. Among the offerings that are not vintage is Junya Watanabe Comme des Garcon’s multicolor wool patchwork blazer, $1787. More info/purchase



MM6 Maison Margiela’s patchwork checked wool coat is wonderfully oversized, $1080. More info/purchase



The Tory Burch ‘Denise’ patchwork printed silk twill wide leg pants are sporty, fun, and youthful, $400. More info/purchase



This Burberry patchwork checked cotton trench coat is an interesting take on the traditional beige version, $2490. More info/purchase



Loewe’s tie front patchwork cotton midi dress has a wonderful shape and playfulness, in keeping with the spirit of Jonathan Anderson, head of design, $1490. More info/purchase



Alice + Olivia’s Glennie faux-fur trimmed patchwork jacket would make a great addition to any wardrobe; throw it on over jeans or an evening dress, $795. More info/purchase



Among the pieces that are vintage and one of a kind is this striking and graphic Dolce & Gabbana black and white patchwork printed coat, $1241. More info/purchase



Rikma’s  high-waisted patchwork  wrap skirt from the 70’s, is made of high quality woven cotton and printed all over with the most divine contrasting patchwork pattern, $450More info/purchase



Last but not least, the late Koos Van Den Akker was known for his collages and patchworks, and this 1970’s Koos Van Den Akker Couture mink and patchwork coat is a wonderful example of his oeuvre, $2600. More info/purchase

It’s impossible for me to talk about Koos Van Den Akker’s patchwork coats without thinking about my personal favorite, a  hefty woolen vintage 1970’s that is one of the best examples I have ever come across. It’s a work of art and it also happened to be a favorite of the late Bill Cunningham who is on everyone’s mind these days with the recent publication of his memoirs.



Click here to read my review. He photographed me in it whenever he saw me wearing it. In his column “Toasty”, March 6, 2005, I appeared wearing the coat both belted and loose. Bill knew what was good, and this was good.

- Marilyn Kirschner

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