The new Halston collection is inspired by the Netflix show about the designer, and it’s totally ‘70s.
Halston, as those who watch the Netflix docuseries will know, was a truly American designer. After all, he got his big break as a milliner after making the pillbox hat Jackie Kennedy wore to her husband’s presidential inauguration. How much more American can you get? Fun fact: That hat was actually too small for the first lady, and she dented it when she held it on as the wind blew, which, funnily enough, would be a detail that was replicated in all the knockoff designs of Halston’s original.
And heck, there’s a whole episode of Halston dedicated to the design competition in the form of a fashion show held at Versailles (which has been aptly called The Battle of Versailles) that he attended against the big French designers of the day: Yves Saint Laurent, Hubert de Givenchy, Pierre Gardin, Emmanuel Ungaro, and Marc Bohan who represented Christian Dior. At the time, American design lagged behind the French. Well, actually more than that, American designs were copycats of what the French had already done. In fact, American designers would actually pay French designers so they could copy their designs. This fashion show would be revolutionary in changing that.
In that spirit, Halston has created a collection inspired by the pieces that were in the Netflix docuseries. It comes out in August, but preorders are already open for those interested in owning something.
Perhaps the most recognizable piece from the show, the Elsa Printed Chiffon Caftan is beautiful and takes you right to the scene where Halston is cutting a piece of fabric to create a flowy, very ‘70s inspired dress for his model and muse Elsa Perretti.
The Liza Pleated Navy Lurex Caftan is clearly named after Liza with a Z — actress, singer, dancer, and (though she often tried to escape the comparison) daughter of Judy Garland, Liza Minelli. The shiny fabric drapes beautifully. That element of design was very important to Halston himself, and the shimmer makes it the perfect winter gown. If only we all had a New Year’s Eve ball to attend.
I’m in love with the deep blue hue of this form fitting gown. It’s essentially the antithesis to the caftans' loose hanging silhouettes, but it’s equally beautiful. A blue eyeshadow look, though daring, would be perfect alongside the blue of this dress. Or perhaps a more subtle blue liner evoking Princess Diana’s early makeup looks.
This caftan is truly worthy of wear by someone like Liza Minelli as they walk the red carpet. It gives a new name to the lazy summer dress the word “caftan” makes me recall. The shimmer and billowing fit of this caftan fully embraces that glamour of the ‘70s that Halston is so well known for encompassing. The movement is captured so easily in the photographs of this dress that I can only imagine how stunning the design is in person.
The neckline of this dress and the pleat of the skirt evokes that famous, or infamous I suppose, photo of Marilyn Monroe pushing down her skirt as the wind causes it to fly up. The old Hollywood glamour translates strongly, just be sure to stay away from wearing this dress if there’s any wind. (Or, try dress weights like Kate Middleton is known to rely upon).
If I said before that I was obsessed with the blue of the Angelica One Shoulder Jersey Gown (and I did), it doesn’t at all diminish how in love I am with the bright green of this one. The rich shades chosen for this collection are very true to the ‘70s Halston style glamour seen throughout the docuseries.
The almost Grecian one-shoulder design and the loose fabric make the Marisa One Shoulder Crepe Gown very true to the draping that Halston loved and prioritized as a designer, who came to see fashion as a fine art and described his approach to it as being analytical.
This jersey gown is made from the iconic Halston jersey material they use so that each dress will hang just right. I particularly like the strategic ruching of the design that adds interest to a plain white dress and could also make it more flattering on different body types.
The metallic threads running through the dress might seem like a small touch, but it adds so much to the intrigue of the fabric. It really shines when the light hits it and makes a print that could otherwise feel a bit heavy, seem light. For me, it’s key to making this gown work.
Honestly, this gown isn’t my favorite. It has that beautiful shiny fabric, a gorgeous print, the classic halter neckline, and billowing cut. But altogether, in this particular design the model loses her shape. It becomes more about the dress and less about the woman wearing it, which misses the point of a gown, to me. But, since we’ve all got different taste, I’ve linked it anyway so you can take a look.
I’m in love with the ‘70s glamour of the new Halston collection. The beautiful silhouettes and colors of these dresses are the real standouts from the limited edition line based on the Netflix docuseries. (Although I’m still disappointed there weren’t any of the famous everyday ultrasuede shirt dresses like the series featured.)
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