John Varvatos has spent several seasons extrapolating the idea of elegance. His customers, he says, want to dress up. “They know how to dress casually,” he said after his show. He’s offering a crash course in long-legged dressiness: a tall, trim take on suiting that’s equal parts classic rocker and Regency fop. (OK, maybe 60-40.)
His jackets are elongated, three-button, and given an extra nip in at the waist by a waistcoat; his pants, narrow or boot-cut—a style now so out of general favor that it looks practically extraterrestrial. It gave you cause to consider that the high-water, ankle-baring pant length that currently enjoys near-universal dominance will, sooner or later, inevitably find its own time at an end. But probably not right now, and probably not at these hands.
In any case, Varvatos’ elegance had a slept-in crumple, its linens creased, its leathers hand-distressed, as if they’d survived weeks on the road. Which is the ultimate Varvatosian fantasy. While working on the collection, he’d been editing John Varvatos: Rock in Fashion, a compendium of rock ‘n’ roll photography, and the influence of elegant, traveling men like Bryan Ferry, David Bowie, and Jimi Hendrix was scrawled here.
The show ended with an updated bandleader’s jacket, the kind Hendrix liked, worn by a man who may be the closest doppelgänger the modeling world currently offers of Jimi himself.