Candice Wu at Boston Fashion Week 2012
Is this the same Candice Wu? At last year's Launch, the designer sent saccharine-y Barbie doll dresses down the runway. This year's show at the Tent at Boston Fashion Week was a departure, and I mean that in the very best way possible. Ms. Wu transformed our notions of her over the course of the show. She took the audience to a decidedly darker place, a place with crocodile-embossed faux-leather detailing, feathers and spikes. And despite the model's birds' nests and incredible headpieces, many pieces were decidedly wearable (quilted pants, parkas, blazers, even a little black dress or two). Two menswear pieces were inexplicably shoved into the show, and a few pieces, like a beige peplum dress with a mock-croc corset, seemed sloppy. All that was overshadowed by the impeccably tailored pants and jackets and the flowing grace of Ms. Wu's gowns. The overall effect was urban but chic, unyielding, but alluring. Evil Queens and city cool girls of the world, you've met your new dressmaker. You're going to look amazing.