By Sarah Kleinhenz, Fashion Week Correspondent
Using materials like bleached metallic tweed, stripped paint twill and washed-out voile, Lela imagined pieces that looked as if they were from another time, something that looked faded and was almost vintage, if you will. Lemon, periwinkle and neon tangerine were paired with soft neutrals to give the collection sort of an electric buzz, similar to what you find in most neon signs. Mixing textures, prints and colors seemed to be a constant. She even went so far as to pair a dainty floral print skirt with a more athletic-style top. Sometimes my style is more classic and simple, but I was really warming up to how she was pairing her garments. I may even try some out next spring (can you imagine?)! Her collection seems a little daring for myself (and maybe hard to wear for us everyday fashionistas?), but that certainly doesn’t take away from the fact that she can design and create one-of-a-kind, unique pieces that just about anyone will look great in.
Lela is also another designer who has partnered with Payless to collaborate on shoe collections. There will be five designs in the Spring 2012 collection. The shoes, just like the clothes, will feature vibrant and bleached hues, graphic shapes and resin studding, which could suggest that of burnt-out neon bulbs. Girlfriends, you must see this collection. We’ve got wedges, wood-stacked heels and a strappy evening heel. And it’s safe to say that I literally heart every pair! I love them more than the clothes (shhh). I get excited when designers partner with a retailer that is known for more affordable options – for what I call the “reality girl”! When you see these shoes, you will DIE! They’re beyond fabulous, and you can bet your last-season espadrilles, I’ll be purchasing several styles from this line. As much as I’m a fall fashionista, I can’t wait to get my hands on these spring beauties!
P.S. Seated front row and center were Mariska Hargitay, Susan Sarandon, and her daughter Eva Amurri. Lela will also be designing the dress for Eva’s upcoming wedding.