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The Row’s Pre-Fall 2014 collection is a mix of sophistication, restraint, complexity, and simplicity. Describing the pieces calls for many paradoxes because the collection is paradoxical, yet entirely practical.  While the collection has its fair share of luxury leather, cashmere, faux fur, and mohair, there is a heavy utilitarian theme.  The Olsens penchant for exquisite fabrics is juxtaposed by the pieces’ functionality. Take for example, the waterproof extra long and generously A-line trench with a fanny pack. The collection includes the fundamentals of a working wardrobe such as trim blazers in sturdy wool and slid-on leather loafers. Gender-blending designs like the faux wrap midi-length skirt in men shirting strips and simple bias cut shift may even seem a bit anti-fashion, though pieces like the aforementioned have been bombarding the catwalks as of late. These gender-blurring pieces in women’s clothing can help with leveling the playing field between men and women. The functionality of the collection with the fanny pack, trench coat, shoulder bag, and loafers also encourages women’s mobility and presence in the corporate world. The Olsens said they were inspired by “classic American pieces” and by images of elderly men and women in their gardens. Their timeless, ageless collection successfully showcased their inspiration. Tonal floral motifs on silk blouses gave the collection a feminine touch and preserved remnants of summer and spring. However, the collection didn’t carry a note of verdant richness with most of the pieces in black, gray, crème, maroon, and navy. This traditional collection catered to the sophisticated, yet hardworking shopper with the 60-something entrepreneur Linda Rodin starring in its lookbook. With their new store opening in Los Angeles this summer, this pre-fall collection will be particularly important. The store looks as if it is on the path to success since the functionality of the collection carefully complements a California lifestyle.

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