Victoria Beckham knows fashion, not just how to wear it or how to buy it but also how to make it — and that's pretty impressive.
Beckham could have staged one flashy New York Fashion Week show previewing her spring collection of dresses, which would surely be a hot ticket no matter what was on the runway. But the style star and wife of soccer player David Beckham chose to personally show her line about a dozen times Sunday to small groups of editors and retailers, explaining the construction of each piece and what she liked about it.
It was an old-fashioned couturier's presentation held in a spare art gallery, with only bowls of roses as decoration.
"This is my third collection, and I wanted to push myself, but I also wanted to be respectful of my customer," she said. "I want her to know she can rely on me."
Instead of switching gears each season to meet the trends, as many designers do, Beckham has focused on a few key silhouettes, some of which are new, and some tweaks of dresses that have already been successful.
Her signature fitted dress now has a lower neckline, stronger shoulders and capped sleeves; the fold-front dress has a shorter hemline just above the knee. There are corsets — sometimes fitted, sometimes not — built into the garments. Several dresses also feature banding, which is emerging as a trend during Fashion Week.
A flared-skirt dress, still with a very slim bodice, is something a little different, Beckham said, and she hopes it will be a permanent addition.
"The tight bodice holds you in, which is never a bad thing," she said.
Lace is new to the collection, but erase any images of anything too delicate.
"This is my way of doing lace," she declared, explaining that the spider web effect is a result of sewing together the pieces with very fine ribbon.
Although she called a black, textured gazar dress with a little sheen and a sexy zip front one of her favorites, she chose to wear a long-sleeve, strong-shoulder black dress with a peplum. She said, somewhat amazingly, that she second-guessed wearing the same outfit as a model because models have such slim figures — as if she didn't.
(In reality, you do have to look like a model — or Beckham — to wear any of these garments.)
Beckham will soon wear a rose-colored tower gown with black bands on the bodice to a big event.
"It will clash with the red carpet," she said with a laugh.
"I try on everything," she added. "I make the dresses for me."