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David Koma Pre-Fall 2021

David Koma, like the rest of us, spent part of this fall bingeing The Crown on Netflix. Emma Corrin’s portrayal of Princess Diana couldn’t help but seep into his pre-fall collection—though luckily for those of us tired of hackneyed takes on pie-crust collars and sheep intarsia sweaters, Koma’s riff on Princess Di is less literal, more freeform. Taffeta, the material of so many of Di’s most splendiferous frocks, has ruched its way into Koma’s collection for the first time in the form of a white shirred mini with crystal rope detailing. As has the idea of equestrianism—we’ve all heard the rumors about Di at the stables before.

That sort of sexiness and suggestion suits the Koma woman, of course. The designer can cut a minidress within an inch of vulgarity from ingenious material pairings like aristocratic velvet and surfer scuba. Even at his most prim, he favors a cut out, crystal detail, or flash of neon, and so the many dresses in this collection come with those sorts of provocative twists. To those who might balk at luxurious, sensual clothing in the sweatpants era—well, Koma’s continued success proves that customers are yearning for a little flash. “I’m still dreaming of a better future,” he said over a video chat. An ostrich feather trimmed lingerie gown seems to guarantee that something fun is on the horizon.

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