09/08/2012 09:47 EDT | Updated 11/08/2012 05:12 EST

Billy Reid offers relatable, luxe looks for spring collection

NEW YORK, N.Y. - The town met the country when designer Billy Reid infused his men's and women's collections for next spring with some of his Alabama charm.

As part of New York Fashion Week on Friday night, ascots, pelican prints and fishing shirts took over a very urban space sandwiched between art galleries in the Chelsea neighbourhood. He offered a coated cotton utility jacket paired with high-waisted trousers and a gold linen shirtdress with exaggerated pockets for women, and a leather peak-lapel jacket, worn with a linen mock turtleneck and sharkskin-texture trouser for men.

When Reid's two worlds come together, the audience sees charm, good taste and a bit of wit. Perhaps more importantly, though, there's a sense of reality here: There are stylish linen sportcoats, luxe — and on-trend — leather looks, and well-tailored suits, including chic, slim pantsuits for women, that one could imagine being worn by the finicky fashion crowd and everyone else.

The warning should come that while the styles have broad appeal, the price tags might not. Reid seems to favour rich fabrics and materials, especially suedes, lambskin and leather in beige, bone and tobacco.


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