During a recent visit to South Florida, Saks Fifth Avenue Fashion Director Cleo Davis-Urman stopped by Boca Raton and Palm Beach Gardens for runway presentations of the store’s “It List” pieces. We met with Davis-Urman to chat about this season’s must-have looks.
What’s most important in
The modern woman on the go, she’s got an agenda. She’s not just buying a piece and wearing it once. Wearability is important. Instruction is important. Kind of showing her how a piece—even a sequin skirt—can be a daytime thing. It doesn’t have to be a thing that sits in your closet and waits for a special occasion. That’s one of the things now more than ever I think consumers are really taking into consideration is ‘how many different ways can I wear this?’ ‘How many seasons can I wear this?’ ‘Is it going to be relevant next season/next year?’
Tell me about the “It List” at Saks.
We are going to be releasing an ‘It List’ every season, and those are the items or the trends that we really feel like it’s your cheat sheet. There are great other things that are important, but if you cover a couple of these, you’re good.
Is there a fashion rule you always follow?
I think the most important thing is don’t wear anything that doesn’t make you feel good or the best possible version of yourself. Something may be in trend, but maybe it’s not necessarily for you. But there’s always a way to embrace the trend and find a way that works for you. Nobody looks good when they don’t look like themselves and when they don’t feel good. No expensive piece or no trendy item is going to change that.
Swimwear is a staple here in South Florida. What can we expect to see this season?
One-pieces made a comeback. The kind of cut-out motif is something that we keep seeing and in new ways. There’s a couple of designers we’re really excited to have now at Saks. Marysia is one of them. They make
kind of bikinis and bathing suits that are
classic silhouettes but have a little sexy twist, so they’ll have the sides cut out, or there will be a cutout in the center, and they do bold colors and prints. Also for swimwear, kind of that kini trend. We’re seeing a lot of embroidery, and even in some cases, crochet and embellishments.
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“For spring, the ‘It List’ included stripes, which to me it was very important to show stripes in ways that people aren’t necessarily thinking of them,” Davis-Urman says. Besides nautical, think glam stripes, bold stripes and ones that are more delicate, refined painterly stripes. “It’s a timeless trend, but we want to show it in ways that are fresh and new,” she says.
“I’m all about comfort and being someone who is always on the go living in New York City, that’s really important. We have great flatforms from so many designers. [The Gucci] flatforms with the pearls are definitely one of my most coveted items.”
“We saw that everyone owns a trench coat, but trench dressing is something that really felt new and fresh,” Davis-Urman says. “There’s a way to do that with a great cargo pant, a khaki skirt. The trench dress from Céline—which is really quite sophisticated and beautiful even though historically trench coats have been a little bit more practical and utilitarian—I thought that was an important trend and feels really fresh and exciting.”
“Ruffles were big for us as an ‘It List’ item,” she says. It’s about showcasing all of the different ways to wear ruffles, though. Find ruffles this season on apparel you wouldn’t think would have them—like a Stella McCartney sweatshirt at Saks.