"There's a hint of Schiaparelli in everything I do," said Isaac Mizrahi a few days before his Spring show, dubbed IM Xerox. Sounds like the call for Troop Trompe l'Oeil. Sure enough, Mizrahi's collection rendered collars, pockets, buttons, bows, and corsages in poor-quality copy-machine images printed on his sweetly ladylike clothes.
The visual witticisms continued at the collar, with a white resin choker crafted to look like it was snapped off a button-down shirt, and a blindingly bright rhinestone bib in a Peter Pan shape. Mizrahi's floral was a grid-collaged photo print. As at Fotomat, you could choose from black-and-white or color, albeit often muted with a tulle overlay, in one of many instances we've seen this week. (Was there a sale on nude tulle in the Garment Center?)
There are moments when Mizrahi's themes take a slightly silly turn. ("Excuse me, can I get that shower curtain in a dress?" quipped a quick-witted stylist on seeing the voluminous dot-matrix textured floral gown that ended the show.) But there were great moments, too, particularly a black strapless column printed at the bodice with a single large bow.
Should it find its way to a red carpet somewhere, it has a chance of survival that's not often granted to conceptual dresses. And a black cap-sleeved shift with actual sequins that merged into a skirt of large paillettes was a simple but cute new way to do an old standard. As such, the copy concept is something of an old standard itself. Perhaps that was the point.