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Collina Strada’s Hillary Taymour has been thinking about the economy. “I’m trying to balance the looming recession version of fashion,” she said at her studio. She was thinking of herself as a small business owner, but she was also letting that principle guide her when it came time to design the actual clothes. “How does my customer purchase one piece of a Collina outfit and have it last and be a part of their wardrobe so they don’t feel like they are overspending on all of these things?” She added, “What does the toned-down version of Collina look like while still being fun?”

The “toned down” version of Collina includes models in animal prosthetics: Some were turned into dolphins or dogs, others wore cute ears or fluffy tails (the show was titled “Please Don’t Eat My Friends”). But beyond the runway spectacle, the real answer is that it looks like classic American sportswear processed through Taymour’s singular creative vision. Two suits, one in a brown and blue plaid cotton flannel, and another in a sage green Eco satin, had floral appliqué embellishments on the hem of the jacket and the trousers; and, keeping with the animal theme of the collection, a matching shirt had a collar in the shape of dog ears. Geometric print jacquard slim-leg trousers were paired with a burnout velvet spaghetti-strap long dress with a ruffled hem, which was layered under a matching sporty tank. It was accessorized with one of Taymour’s signatures, an olive green tulle “skirt belt,” perhaps the easiest way for any person to bring a bit of the designer’s universe into their wardrobe. A great oversized chunky sweater, a sporty quilted jacket in a ski-inspired silhouette, and a great indigo crushed velvet duster coat rounded out a collection of sturdy wardrobe basics.

Another standout was Taymour’s take on animal print, which she interpreted in a quite literal way. A fur-printed denim strapless dress with inverted pleats worn with matching wide-leg cargo trousers from one of the show’s earlier exits. A delicate lace-trimmed biodegradable satin tank was a beautiful shade of green that upon closer inspection was a reptile-skin print (a gecko, to be exact). It was worn with matching trousers, and a terrific deadstock plaid wool overcoat. Even Taymour’s dog Pow made a cameo, his face was printed on a t-shirt (the model wearing this look carried him under her arm to the great delight of showgoers). Another lovely silk organza mini dress had a floral print that featured bees.

The more formal gowns are a bit of new territory for the designer, but she’s leaning into it. “We’re trying to do some more sleek things, and we’re using a lot of silk satin,” she explained. A chocolate brown biodegradable satin bias-cut dress looked classic, although it did come with horns (removable) on the shoulders. Tommy Dorfman closed the show in a white satin spaghetti strap bias-cut number with floral appliqués covering an elongated hem that trailed behind her like a train as she walked down the runway. Taymour added, “I’m figuring out how crazy to go with the gowns, but I’m excited about the way it looks.”