During the pandemic, Ralph Lauren made wardrobing collections of elegant clothes tailored to his clients’ circumscribed day-to-day activities. As working from home gave way to scheduled returns-to-office, neutral cashmere layers were replaced by crisp suits in a vivid palette of orange, green, and navy.
This collection, in contrast, seems driven by Lauren’s cravings for wanderlust and adventure, which of course aren’t unrelated to the last two years of inertia. Its touchstone was a vintage picture of the designer holidaying somewhere in chinos and ikats. A scroll through the Instagram account #oldralphlaurenads will teach anyone unfamiliar with the man that Lauren doesn’t lack for personal style.
The new collection lifts directly from that archival image, retaining its eclectic, laid-back spirit, while amping up colors and womanly shapes. Ikat tailcoats and blazers are paired with relaxed chinos or artfully embroidered jeans. The denim showcases the studio’s more artisanal approach this season; ditto a printed ikat leather dress laser cut into strips for an almost origami-like effect. Elsewhere the focus is on the very Ralph combination of flannel shirts and ikat sarongs wrapped at the hips with vintage turquoise and silver concho belts from his own personal collection.