Sea Fall 2021 Ready-to-Wear

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Sea has always been a dress brand, specifically the kind of breezy, vaguely bohemian dress you’d sooner wear with Tevas, not heels. Last year, that began to change with a single patchwork coat. For pre-fall 2020, Monica Paolini introduced a lightweight, voluminous pastel quilted coat, and it was a runaway success. It partly came down to the coat’s mix of blanket-y comfort and of-the-moment craftiness, but the timing was impeccable too; designed before the pandemic but released smack in the middle of lockdown, it was ideal for outdoor dining, or even just wrapping up at home.

Monica Paolini and Sean Monahan have re-cut it several times since, most recently with loosened-up sleeves to accommodate a sweatshirt underneath. But it also pushed the duo to experiment with more outwear styles, including fall 2021’s new puffers and wool topcoats. A cropped black puffer was cleverly updated with Sea’s signature eyelet around the shoulders, while a camel ankle-length style came with a removable hood and self-tie scarf. Another puffer in crimson vegan leather had giant, rounded sleeves, and a sleeping bag puffer nodded to their signature quilting with a graphic black-and-white zigzag motif. All were welcome alternatives to the monotonous black, Michelin Man puffers we’ve seen on almost every New Yorker this winter.

This collection will begin arriving in stores in July, so the clothes underneath the coats were equally important. The label’s usual cotton dresses, jumpsuits, and mohair knits were pared back this time, but with XXL shoulders in the form of peaked sleeves or huge collars. They’re soft, easy-to-wear clothes that still command attention, a balance that will resonate with many women as they re-emerge.

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