Text by KARA WEYMOUTH

Runway Images by CHERYL GORSKI/www.fashionmaniac.com

ANNA SUI has long ago perfected her brand of rock-n-roll bohemia and her SPRING/SUMMER 2013 collection of poplin dresses, ripped fishnets and candy colored hair lives up to expectations.

Over the past few seasons, Sui has maintained a fascination with the Victorian and her collections had a distinctly more adult energy than usual while maintaining her trademark whimsy. This collection feels much less extravagant (even with the petticoats), and more appealing to the youthful downtown scene that Sui has always had a connection to. Maybe Anna had a hunch that this year’s Costume Institute exhibit at the Met was going to be all about punk style!

 

First down the runway, with KARLIE KLOSS’s feline prowl and striking eyes attached, was an army green, print jumpsuit with a leopard print bralet that set the punk rock tone for the show. One of the great things about Anna’s styling is that nearly every look can be broken down to separates that any girl could easily blend into her closet. Take, for example, look 15, with its Ribbon Lattice Cardigan that could be worn over any spring camisole or blouse. The loose lace top is probably best worn casually, but the Olive Ribbed Jacquard Pants can be dressed up or down as needed. Anna’s whimsical accessories make the biggest splash when paired with simpler pieces- after all a cap with cat ears and shoes topped with ladybug antennas make quite an impression on their own!

Where would punk or grunge be without plaids? Anna sprinkled the staple throughout with a red plaid, zippered trench on model LINDSEY WIXSON to a cream and brown plaid shirt made, amazingly, of chiffon.

Anna also makes a strong case for this spring’s trend of dresses for day, albeit dressed down with leggings, ripped fishnets or cropped pants underneath. Some of these proportions were jarring; off the runway wear those baby doll dresses over a sleek pant rather than loose cargos!

The collection had two standout moments; the first came in the form of a black neoprene motorcycle jacket and matching leggings paired with an elaborate lace dress. It’s the absolute epitome of downtown chic. Surprisingly, Anna’s take on formal eveningwear, made of subversive denim, also stands out. Embellished with pearls and gold sequins in baroque pattern, it’s the only piece that truly references her stated inspiration: French designer MADELEINE CASTAING.

This was easily one of Anna Sui’s strongest collections in her twenty plus years of showing at NYFW. It’s playful, young, and, best of all, wearable.

Anna Sui is available on Revolve Clothing and Net-A-Porter.