Mara Hoffman’s name is synonymous with her electric prints, but for Spring she set out to prove her evolution and range as a designer. “I do fabrications. I do silhouettes. I do a whole lot more than just blasting you with neon prints,” she said backstage before her runway show. “I wanted to shift the equation and create something that reflected more of my own personal aesthetic. I want my girl to grow and hope she comes along with me on the trip.” Scaling back those in-your-face graphics made for a tranquil, easier collection that ultimately captured Hoffman’s mantra: “Be light.”
The first look out—a white linen button-down paired with matching wide-leg culottes—exemplified this season’s new, softer direction. Continuing to work with natural fabrics and a muted color palette, Hoffman whipped up relaxed pieces including a floor-sweeping terra-cotta-hued bandeau dress, and a woven shirt-and-trousers set with faded rainbow stripes. More often than not, patterns were incorporated in the form of beading (a dégradé checkerboard slip, in particular, earned high marks) or embroidery (Hoffman’s favorite group featured “electrolyte” needlework). And while the designer largely moved away from her signature prints here, she couldn’t help but sprinkle a “harvest” motif resembling cannabis leaves throughout the lineup. Hoffman took her finale bow in a cute cutout jumpsuit splashed with the mood-lifting pattern, which is sure to become a hit among her loyal, free-spirited customers. Talk about a high point.