Jason Wu


Did Jason Wu have an informer in the McCain campaign who whispered “Sarah Palin” in his ear while he was working in his studio, preparing this collection? ‘Woman in the White House’ could have been Wu’s muse, with Jackie Kennedy’s iconic boxy tweed suits jackets and pencil skirts as a jumping off point. But Wu softened this silhouette, showing full, feminine skirts and A-line jackets, and used similar hues of the same bold colors, like variations of fuchsia, violet, and canary yellow layered into an outfit to provide pops of candy-coated colors, but with interesting contrasting textures to keep you on your toes.

The genius of a designer can be seen in fabric selection, and Wu is clearly on his way to becoming a maestro. On a studio visit last month, Wu said, “I’m using the reverse side of lots of these fabrics to make it more interesting,” and interesting it was. The reverse of an embroidered pink and purple dotted silk blurred the dots and added another dimension. A flattened pleated ruffle down the front of fuchsia tweed jacket stood out over silken blouses with pretty knit tops and eye-popping Swarovski crystal necklaces. Eye-lash trim embroidery was stunning on a white overcoat, and flirty collared blouses with dainty pleats, wide, raw-silk shorts and pretty dresses had a couturier’s touch.

The critics like Anna Wintour and Andre Leon Talley aren’t the only ones to notice Wu’s burgeoning talent (the designer is a nominee for the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund, a kind of Academy Award for the fashion industry); Gossip Girl star Leighton Meester and actresses Olivia Thirlby and Joy Bryant sat front row. Perhaps they were admiring the finale of ruffled chiffon gowns for their upcoming turns on the red carpet.