In Baltimore, the best way to capture the vibe spotted at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week is with a quick trip to a department store or high-end boutique. Both are generally stocked with a slew of garments from designers whose creations regularly appear on the runway and in the glossy magazines.
This week, expect to see plenty of bold colors, feminine details such as playful necklines, and lighter pieces that are perfect for the warmer months as the annual fashion extravaganza, which runs through Thursday in New York City, showcases designers' spring 2012 collections. You can see live streams of some of the designers' work on the Fashion Week website (mbfashionweek.com), and if you like their aesthetic, head to these local boutiques and major department stores for their current offerings.
Rebecca Taylor (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 9): The inspiration for the Australian designer's line is "contemporary, fresh, and ethereal," she says. "The collection emphasizes cut and color with unexpected cutouts in silhouettes. Shades of oyster are highlighted by bold citrus colors of lemon, lime and tangerine. Cropped slouchy embellished sweaters, long skirts and voluminous outerwear in technical fabrics add edge while apron-back dresses mixed with bone-colored snake leather bibs inject a pared-down cool attitude which sets the tone for the Spring 2012 collection."
Find Rebecca Taylor at Urban Chic, 801 Aliceanna St. (410-685-1601) and at Essentials by Panache, 10751 Falls Road No. 103, Lutherville (410-321-5818). Rebecca Taylor is also sold at Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue and Bloomingdale's.
Nicole Miller (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 9): With Angelina Jolie, Beyonce and Gabrielle Union regularly rocking her looks, Nicole Miller is a favorite of the famous and fashion critics. Miller's designs are available at Green Spring Station's Essentials by Panache, which has one of the largest collections of Miller's designs in the state. Cupcake in Fells Point also has a number of pieces, including a killer stretch metallic taffeta cocktail dress for $430. "Her dresses are flattering on people's bodies," says Cupcake owner Lisa Schatz. "She knows how to cut a dress so that it looks good on your body." (Cupcake also carries Halston Heritage, Yoana Baraschi and Black Halo; all are New York Fashion Week regulars.)
Find Nicole Miller at Essentials by Panache, 10751 Falls Road, No. 103, Lutherville (410-321-5818) and Cupcake, 813 S. Broadway (410-522-0941). You can also find Nicole Miller at Nordstrom.
Christian Siriano (showcasing Sept. 10): After a successful showing in the spring, "Project Runway" wunderkind Christian Siriano will be showcasing a collection of shoes and handbags for Payless ShoeSource during Fashion Week. (His couture, however, is not sold in his home state of Maryland.) In addition to his collaboration with Payless, he has projects with Starbucks and Victoria's Secret and showcases his work on his website, christianvsiriano.com. For local customers, Siriano will present his spring 2012 collection Oct. 21 at Pink Rocks The Runway, a Washington charity fashion show that benefits breast cancer research. (Find out more at pinkjams.org.)
Tracy Reese (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 11): Tracy Reese says her collection is inspired by a land of pure delight. "A feminine yet relaxed mood is achieved through the juxtaposition of romance and sport, comfort and flattery," Reese says. "Subtle hues of khaki and blush mixed with pastel shades of waterfall, misty blue and aqua tears gradually intensify to deep saturated tones and neon brights, making a bold splash for the transition into summer. A drapey culotte jumpsuit in waterfall, complemented with drawstring waist and seductive neckline details, pairs with a lemon zest hat and printed platform sandals to embody the relaxed mood of the season."
Find Tracy Reese at Jones & Jones, 84 Village Square in the Village of Cross Keys (410-532-9645) and at Nordstrom.
Vera Wang (showcasing and live streaming Sept 13): From high-end wedding dresses to her fashion and home collection at Kohl's, Wang offers fashions in a variety of prices. Check out Saks Jandel in Chevy Chase for Vera Wang Ready to Wear and Vera Wang Bridal. White by Vera Wang is being sold at David's Bridal locations throughout the country.
Find Vera Wang Ready to Wear and Vera Wang Bridal at Saks Jandel, 5510 Wisconsin Ave., Chevy Chase. Call 301-652-2250. Find Simply Vera Vera Wang at Kohl's and kohls.com. Find White by Vera Wang at David's Bridal.
Tibi (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 13): Designer Amy Smilovic has made Tibi one of America's premiere contemporary fashion lines. Celebs such as Shenae Grimes, Jessica Alba and Blake Lively give the brand star power. "It's a very strong line," says Nancy Lattmann, owner of L'Apparenza. "The fit is excellent. You can go from daytime to evening. I also love Tibi coats."
Find Tibi at L'Apparenza, 6080 Falls Road (410-372-0350), Essentials by Panache, 10751 Falls Road, No. 103, Lutherville (410-321-5818), Urban Chic, 8180 Maple Lawn Blvd., Fulton (301-490-9952) and Horse Boutique, 158 Main St., Annapolis (410-626-9726).
Tory Burch (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 13): Anne Hathaway, Halle Berry and Taylor Swift are all loyal wearers of Tory Burch. "She has such a following," says Lattmann. "It's almost like a cult-like following. People love to be seen in Tory Burch. I really like her fit, and she's classic."
Find Tory Burch at L'Apparenza, 6080 Falls Road (410-372-0350), Tory Burch shoes at Sassanova, 805 Aliceanna St. (410-244-1114). Also at Nordstrom and Neiman Marcus.
Michael Kors (showcasing Sept. 14): In addition to Micahel Kors' store in the Luxury Wing of Towson Town Mall, designs from the "Project Runway" judge can be found at a variety of stores, including TJ Maxx, Macy's, the Queenstown Premium Outlets and Couture Closet in Federal Hill. (Couture Closet also features Carolina Herrera, Jason Wu and Alexander Wang.)
Find Michael Kors in the Luxury Wing of Towson Town Mall, and at Couture Closet, 1003 Light St. Call 410-528-2999 or go to coutureclosetshop.com
Milly (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 14): Michelle Smith, designer and creative director of Milly, says her collection is "modern and geometric in cut and print, softened by earthy materials like wood and tortoise resin." She adds: "Colors are vibrant and exciting- vermilion, tangerine, jade and azure are grounded by chocolate brown and indigo."
Find Milly at Jones & Jones, 84 Village Square in the Village of Cross Keys (410-532-9645) and at Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue.
Department stores will offer the largest offering of household-name designers and labels.
Nordstrom has one of the most extensive collection of popular designers, with shoes from Tory Burch, Vera Wang and Badgley Mischka; handbags from L.A.M.B. (showcasing Sept. 11) and Rebecca Minkoff (showcasing and live streaming Sept 12); and garments by Tracy Reese, Narciso Rodriguez, Diane von Furstenberg (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 11), Betsey Johnson, BCBGMAXAZRIA, Elie Tahari, Rebecca Taylor, Nanette Lepore, Calvin Klein, Monique Lhuillier (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 10), Tadashi Shoji (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 8), Nicole Miller, DKNY (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 11) and Michael Kors.
Macy's carries Vivienne Tam (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 10), Calvin Klein, Michael Kors, Lauren by Ralph Lauren (showcasing Sept. 15), Tommy Hilfiger (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 11), BCBGMAXAZRIA (showcasing Sept. 8) and Rachel Roy. Karl Lagerfeld launched a limited edition women's line "Impulse" for Macy's, which launched Aug. 31 at 235 Macy's stores nationwide and at macys.com.
Kohl's offers the Simply Vera Vera Wang line, and TJ Maxx regularly carries items from DKNY, Michael Kors and BCBGMAXAZRIA.
Ruth Shaw Inc., one of the area'spremier women's boutiques, also features a number of top designers: Narcisco Rodriguez (showcasing and live streaming Sept. 13), DKNY, Etro, Helmut Lang, Jason Wu, Rag and Bone, Sonia Rykiel, Moschino and Philip Lim.