New York (AP) – Guests entering the Oscar de la Renta show were pleasantly surprised to find a single red carnation on their seats. For designer Peter Copping, who was presenting only his second collection as the company's artistic director, it is a Parisian tradition that was worth bringing to New York.
"It's something that was done when I worked in Paris for Christian Lacroix," Copping said in a backstage interview. "And I think it's nice to bring a little of that Parisian way of things here to New York. I think it makes the house stand alone, and that's important these days."
Also, the flower fit in with the show's Hispanic theme. "This is the flower that gets thrown to the bullfighters in the bullring," Copping noted.
The designer said he drew inspiration for his show at the Hispanic Society of America in Harlem, where he viewed paintings and textiles that he knew de la Renta, who died in October 2014, would have loved.
Hispanic culture was "obviously something that was very close to Oscar's heart, and I just really wanted to think about things that Oscar was passionate about," Copping said.
There was a carnation print in the collection — in red and white — and the colors of ruby and black were prominent, along with bottle green, saffron and sea foam, among others. Copping did not stint on the intricate embroidery and fabric work — especially with lace — that his predecessor was famous for.
Copping did introduce one thing, though, that was totally new for the house: the Spanish espadrille, a casual shoe that the designer paired with some quite elaborate dresses.
"I thought that would give the whole collection a different twist, just to have the espadrille, which is THE Spanish shoe," Copping said. "I just thought it would be younger and fresher."