A “proper English gentleman”s hunting wardrobe” was the inspiration behind Jenni Kayne”s latest collection for cool, classy girls. If that makes you think of Downton Abbey“s Cousin Matthew, you”re on the right track, but Kayne”s embrace of a theme is always gentle. Classic British fabrics like tweed and herringbone made appearances, but Fall was as influenced by Kayne”s favorite decade, the nineties, as it was by manor living, so a digitized Prince of Wales check in burnt orange and blue was a cheeky modern update of an old trope. If that print, on a sheer blouse and slim matching pants, looked a little like Tetris (in a good way), a purple and pale chartreuse floral print was all girly garden party. The blooms came on a long, navy, bias-cut skirt and sheer, sexily slouchy top that, worn together, passed for a dress.
The idea of matching sets carried over to cocktails, a reflection of Kayne”s personal preference. “I”m totally into separates for evening,” she said. “I like the idea of offering something chic that”s not a dress.” A to-the-floor black skirt, sheer but for a mini, curve-hugging underlay, came paired with an artfully revealing black tuxedo top, sleeves rolled to the elbow. That was alluring, but the conversation pieces were two skirts—one black, one white—made from a pouf of feathers. The model in the white one wore hers with a white mohair sweater; she looked entirely at home in the tony library of the Chatwal Hotel, lounging by the couch. “I call that my Clueless sweater,” Kayne said, confirming it was mohair. “In a good way.”