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Pamella Roland: Fall collection is an Art Deco journey of elegance

Upon seeing the exhibit of her friend and artist T.J. Wilcox, Pamella Roland was moved to inquire about the time period in which the Chrysler and Empire State buildings were built. Upon discovering it was the ‘30s Art Deco period, Roland was accordingly inspired. From reversible wool and patent leather suiting pieces to gossamer gowns with Art Deco detailing to slip style dresses with peekaboo inserts and inverted V waist seams and sleeve detailing abounded throughout, Roland provided a diverse fall 2014 collection across the spectrum.

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York City, Lincoln Center, Pamella Roland Fall/Winter 2014 collection.
Photo by Frazer Harrison
Cristen Barker and Nigel Barker attend the Pamella Roland fashion show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Fall 2014 at The Salon at Lincoln Center on February 11, 2014 in New York City.
Photo by Larry Busacca

Models emerged with their tresses coiffed a la Veronica Lake in the peekaboo style; with soft curls pulled to the fullest section for a simple, sexy look. And seamed hosiery was worn with every look.

The first look to emerge was the black double-sided reversible coat with patch pockets, one side wool windowpane plaid with patent leather finish on the reverse. Shown with black turtleneck and off black hosiery, it was ready for rain, wind and weather, with elegance and style. The length of the skirt at the knee was very attractive with the pointed toe pump.

This was followed by a modern princess seamed below-the-knee cape in black with seams accented with patent leather, stand collar, and worn with a dress in gray plaid that graduated from the hem to just below the bust, creating an empire look to the sleeveless dress. Both understated and refined; they will work quite well from the office to the evening.

One of the big hits was a glamorous deep indigo/navy cocktail dress with sheer long sleeves with multi seams for drama, matte and satin sections with peekaboo midriff, deep V-neckline and knee length. Not one to be soon forgotten. Another favored look was when then the show shifted to variations on grey and plum, with a sleeved boxy four panel boatneck pullover jacket with Art Deco diamond sequined skirt and pant ensembles.

There were several sheer tops embellished with stonework resembling a New York City skyline and reflection of the East River. One variation was worn with a leather skirt, while another was worn with a dress in a knife-pleat skirt.

This was followed by a sleeveless black diamond abstract pattern, with shape encapsulated in a sheer band, boat neckline with heart shaped bodice details trim in leather, full circle skirt, skirt and heart shaped bodice lined in pale yellow, black leather gloves to just below the elbow.

One piece, which I found extremely attractive was the follow-on burgundy mixed leather and texture ¾ length zip front thigh length jacket with wide welt pockets and slim to the knee burgundy skirt.

A number of other notable looks included:

A black, pale gold thigh high boatneck dress in metallic ombré from black with gold fleck to pale gold and sheer black lines just above the bust changing lines from gold to black. A variant showed this in silver progressing into a pale gold.

A cool cappuccino colored jacket with zipper detailing on sleeves and jacket front, diagonal dropped yoke on jacket front, sequined scarf and hooded with fur trim and worn with black hose and knee length lace boots.

A burgundy and black gown, with deep V, diamond insert pattern in bodice and from the neckline across the hips to mid thigh, sheer black sleeves. Gorgeous!

An opulent, champagne silk charmeuse long gown, sheer crepe sleeves with fitted wrist draped from the bodice, detailed with V shaped panels, and the inverted V waist seam was heavenly. Definitely a candidate for the Hollywood red carpet.

A black sheer column gown with boatneck and long sleeves, graphite art deco patterned stonework which was exquisite.

A bordeaux satin gown, deep V, caplet sleeve, sheer black inverted V inset and an inverted V inset of matte burgundy, with a satin lower skirt and sleeve. This was lovely.

The most colorful of the gowns was a crimson and black silk chiffon strapless, straight edge bodice, with wrapped chiffon waist and black lining.

By far, my favorites were the navy and burgundy pieces, as well as the champagne pieces. While black has always been the norm for evening wear, there are now some additional options for fall 2014

The suit ensembles using a combination of wool, leather, feather, sequin and fur held many great looks, and that which could be interchanged as separates in black, grey, plum and burgundy.

There were a couple of recurring themes in this collection, one of which was the inverted V waist and boatneck lines. Another was the slip style dress in the Art Deco diamond pattern.

Roland’s friend Wilcox had said that he wanted his films and videos to appear as the visible record of his journey, and highlighting those things that have captured his imagination. Likewise, Roland’s fall 2014 collection could very well be considered a record of her sartorial journey as well as those things of the Art Deco period that have captured her imagination.

I am looking forward to seeing Roland's S/S 2015 collection in September.

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Cindy Ann Peterson, AICI FLC is a couture designer and an award winning image and style consultant. Named by the Netherlands' Kleur and Stijl as one of the Big 7 color and style consultants for Washington DC. She is also a co-author of "My Style, My Way" and "The Power of Civility." Having lived around the globe, she speaks on a variety of style and civility topics and reflects an international flair with her Peterson Perspective to delight and inspire. Visit her website at

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