Nanette Lepore offers a dose of escapism on runway

Staff Writer
Columbus Monthly

NEW YORK (AP) — Nanette Lepore, known for her youthful feminine fashions, sent embroidered caftans and colorful dresses with halter tops and cut-out backs down the runway on Sunday as a way to escape to warm, sunny places.

Lepore invoked the coasts of California and France as the inspiration for her collection during an interview backstage before her show.

"It's about beautiful colors of the sky and the sea and the bright sun," she said. "It's fun, beachy places. I'm really trying to play up that fresh, feminine cool vibe."

Lepore's spring 2015 collection featured yellow tent dresses, white strapless dresses, and embroidered black and white caftans. There were also floral two-piece and one-piece swimsuits.

"I used to go to California every summer as a kid. So I've always had really fond memories. And I love visiting the south of France," Lepore added.

Lepore has received some attention for her commitment to bringing back jobs in New York's garment industry. Chirlane McCray, the wife of New York's new mayor, Bill de Blasio, wore a Lepore outfit to her husband's inauguration in January, as did their daughter.

Lepore said she and other designers met with de Blasio and his wife at Gracie Mansion this week and said they're going to set up time with the administration in the future to "talk about how they can keep pushing the revival of the New York City garment center." She's confident that the new mayor will be effective.

"This is a can-do administration, from what they pulled off with pre-K," said Lepore, referring to the mayor's expansion of prekindergarten programs. "So I think anything they decide to do to help, they're going to be able to do it. So I'm happy about that."


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