“I want to see things come back to life.” That was Brandon Maxwell in his showroom surrounded by a vibrant resort collection.
After an emotional tribute to his grandmother for fall 2022 back in February, Maxwell relocated to Los Angeles for a couple of months. He co-hosted ABC’s red carpet Oscars pre-show and spent a lot of time outside at his best friend’s place on the west side; it felt like a reprieve, he said, after months of hunkering down in his New York apartment during the pandemic.
The world feels awfully dark at the moment. That’s probably why we’re seeing designers embrace so much color this season. But few of them can match Maxwell for exuberance. This was a departure from his fall, which was rendered mostly in shades of black and white, but it was not so different from his lively spring show before it. That spring collection was Maxwell’s best-selling ever. Why not lean into that success? Why not say yes to happiness?
After a couple of months in LA he seems to be of the opinion that Californians have something to teach the rest of us on that subject. The airbrushed T-shirts you find in Venice Beach souvenir shops were reimagined as printed fine gauge sweaters worn with fluted hem midi skirts in complementary colors, as a sundress with a pleated bodice and skirt, and as a silk duchesse mostly backless mini dress.
Maxwell pointed out the work required to match up a palm tree’s leaves across the seams on the front of that mini dress. “I like clothes that look easy but are complicated to make,” he said. There were a few more in the showroom that met that description, among them a ball gown with exactingly matched horizontal stripes and a chambray shirt and full denim skirt painstakingly dip-dyed at their hems. Another standout dress in crushed pink and green cotton, whose laidback attitude was achieved by a hand-wringing process, was already on loan. Another happy customer. (vogue.com)