Spring/Summer 2015 Preview: Tome

For Spring 2015, Tome designers Ramon Martin and Ryan Lobo kept a grab-and-go approach to dressing in mind. “From the very beginning, we never wanted our line to be about dressing head to toe,” says Lobo. “The Tome woman doesn’t necessarily have the time to put a total look together, but she wants to look put together, and doesn’t want to think about it,” Martin adds. “Our goal was to apply how men dress and shop to womenswear.”

The same goes for the team’s inspiration this season: two Indian female artists, the photographer Dayanita Singh [often referred to as “The Nan Goldin of India”], and the late dancer Rukmini Devi Arundale. These women’s stories, more than their personal attire, were used as a loose backdrop for the collection. “Don’t expect to see any saris here,” Martin jokes. Lobo, for his part, summons a certain nostalgia for Kolkuta, India, where he grew up. The takeaway: cultural grounding wed to elegant nonchalance.

The sharply-edited assortment of wrap skirts, caftans, and easy sheath dresses (including an especially stunning one-shoulder, pleated column in rust-colored silk with a flounced hem) has a lived-in quality, allowing the pieces to be quietly absorbed into an existing wardrobe. Embroidered skirts and karate trousers, both in taffeta, balance more tailored pieces like a gold lamé bolero and a black brocade, nipped-waist dinner jacket—new items for designers best known for their flowing frocks and separates.

Fresh off the heels of The White Shirt Project, Martin and Lobo also explored tertiary hues and sophisticated black and white stripes. A delicate Indian floral lace in shades of rust and mauve echoes the pair’s first pre-collection, Resort ’15, taking shape in sexy slip dresses and skirts paired with blouses cut generously enough to swaddle its wearer—and get her from her boyfriend’s bedroom to the boardroom.