There was a celebratory feel in the air at Badgley Mischka’s spring presentation in New York this evening. Held at the restaurant Delmonico’s—the Financial District institution that’s set to reopen this fall—the space was crowded with some of designers Mark Badgley and James Mischka’s closest friends and supporters—some of whom even acted as models this season, including the Tony-winning performer Bonnie Milligan and model Coco Mitchell, who acted as the label’s very first fit model. The occasion for such a big blowout bash? The brand was ringing in its 35th anniversary. “It’s a collection that [represents] everything we stand for,” said Badgley. “It drew from all of the parts of the country that James and I live in—Palm Beach, New York, Georgia, Las Vegas.”

The clothes certainly screamed Badgley Mischka’s signatures for an uptown clientele that loves a gala. The gowns and cocktail dresses were plentiful, and were focused on upbeat colors and big silhouettes that commanded attention. A shiny-yellow, one-shouldered cocktail dress had a ruffled hemline and trim. “We did floating gowns that are away from the body,” said Mischka. A structured white column dress was embellished with pink and purple rosettes along the trim, and finished with a big pink bow at the hip. Maximalism was in high effect—then again, when is it not at Badgley Mischka? Their designs are created to make an entrance.

That’s not to say the duo didn’t make attempts to pare back. In fact, some of their most splendid creations were their quietest. A glazed silver suit had just the right amount of dazzle, as did the draped, floor-length dress in cream-pink that elegantly fell off the shoulder. It’s these types of dresses—more cocktail than full-on ball gown—that felt fresh for the pair. “We love that cocktail dresses have become an option as opposed to a gown,” said Mischka. “But they still have the importance of a gown.” Sure, there were no big attempts at infusing newness into the collection—imagine a whole collection of daywear, or one devoid of any color!—but then again, a big anniversary would be a strange place to do so. “We just wanted to have fun,” said Badgley. “It’s a celebration of 35 years—which, in fashion, is forever.”

This article was originally published on Vogue Runway.

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