In regard to

Babou's Revenge

Spring 2017 - Babou's Revenge

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VOGUE.COM

Karen Walker is nothing if not unpredictable in her references. This season, she bested herself, taking inspiration from Babou, the ocelot Salvador Dalí kept as a pet. To be more specific, Walker’s latest collection sprung from her wondering what Babou might have made of his trip from a jungle in Colombia to a suite at the St. Regis. Walker’s supposition was that the big cat, if endowed with human consciousness, would have had a response something along the lines of: WTH?

God bless Karen Walker and her weird, weird mind. But if the route she took to arrive at her new collection was an odd and veering one, the appeal of the clothes themselves was altogether direct. There were leopard prints, of course—the ocelot is also known as the baby leopard—done in faux fur or Lurex jacquard, not to mention sweatshirts with punchy wildcat graphics and prints of jungle birds and jungle flora. In general, though, the charm of the collection derived from the way Walker extrapolated Latin-American folk aesthetics into citified looks. Polished takes on the peasant blouse or dress mixed in with boyish tailoring, while the denim and outerwear absorbed the folk influence, coming punctuated by unexpected flounces and frills. A cropped, ruffle-detailed denim jacket looked particularly sharp.

But it was hard to pick standouts, in fact, inasmuch as all the pieces here were so cannily done, whether a blouson poplin shirt detailed with pintucks and flounced cuffs, or basic black dresses done in short baby doll or 1940s-inspired mid-calf shapes. The tailoring was typically solid, too. Babou might have been feeling a little WTF about his sojourn in the city with Dalí, but for Walker fans, the reaction to the collection he inspired is more likely to be OMG.

Maya Singer

In regard to

Babou's Revenge

Spring 2017 - Babou's Revenge