The Shophound saw exactly 30 shows this Fashion Week, which, believe it or not, is fewer than in some past years, but we always have a few favorites that are at the top of our lists, including the Gant by Michael Bastian show. Even though it's not even a full runway show, we love it because we personally like the clothes, and, since it's a presentation, we can get a good look at the collection and the models will always take a few seconds and direct a pose just towards our camera.
So how annoyed was The Shophound to discover that the Gant show on Wednesday at 2:30 in Chelsea would overlap with Chado Ralph Rucci at 2:00 at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week at Lincoln Center? Very. Normally, we would just pick one, but these were both priority shows for us, so we decided that at the very second Ralph Rucci took his bow, we would bound out of that Theater tent and grab a cab to The Park at 10th and 18th. It was a dicey proposition hinging mostly on favorable traffic, but when we want to see everything, we want to see everything.
Luckily, it worked! We arrived at the presentation with about 20 minutes to spare giving us plenty of time to marvel at how Bastian and his team transformed the very citified Park restaurant into a Hawaiian surf shack. It was more the atmosphere and the collection than it was a dramatic decor scheme. Bastian pushed Gant's classic, preppy roots in a surfer direction to delightful effect with lots of washed out neon colors and ragged edged shorts. He has been chronicling his preparations for the show, called "Sunshine Days" in a special blog, so if you have been following it you will recognize the models and the music (and, yes, he even played that classic "Brady Bunch" song of the same name)
Somehow, on a muggy, stressful day, a bunch of hidden fans created a soft breeze inside the venue that gave the whole place a beachy ambiance (with a little help from the bar), and with Rodrigo, the first model at the entrance (at right), smiling and dancing on his yellow cube, we could pretty much forget about the other stresses of the week, and start planning a beach trip for next summer.
After the jump, a few more of our favorite looks—