People are less and less surprised each season when I say New York is my personal favourite fashion week – maybe because I say it so often. In my second year of my Fashion Journalism degree I actually wrote a loooooong feature on how NYFW is overtaking Paris in terms of importance, and relevance. Personally, I feel NYFW is more inclusive than the “fashion capital of the world” (did you read that as though talking through your nose? That’s how I wrote it…) and in a generation of over-sharing we simply don’t have the patience for the closed-door policy lingering over Paris. Not that I don’t love many of the fantastic designers showing in Paris; Ellery, Celine, Balenciaga… The magic surrounding the city is undeniable, however I think NY designers are a bit more creative in terms of how they brand themselves, and perhaps have found a way to use storytelling mediums that are more relatable to us, as consumers. And that, I find very interesting.
Since a trip to NYC wasn’t on the itinerary I’ve been living vicariously through Instagram stories; Camille Charriere, Lainy Hedaya, Courtney Trop, Elaine Welteroth and Eva Chen (duh) are awesome for this. And here are my NYFW picks…
The Olsen twins image has changed over the years, granted, but my desire to be one has remained unwavering since 2001. I know, I know – it’s not about the famous twins, it’s about the clothes. Except it is about the twins (for me at least). Sorry, not sorry. That’s not to say I don’t respect these ladies as designers and creative directors, though. It’s hard not to take these garments seriously. They speak for themselves. The lavish wool coats, visibly silky furs and sumptuous leathers they showcased last week couldn’t be farther from the girl-next-door look they pulled off a decade and a half ago. It’s no secret these clothes are designed for a monied women, but they will provide sartorial porn for ladies the world over – myself, included. However, beside the blatant luxury, there are small, almost unnoticeable, details that suggest The Row may be putting their two-pence into the political conversation (as did many other designers this season). Embroidered into the cuffs and hems of crisp poplin shirts were words such as ‘unity’, ‘hope’ and ‘dignity’.
Over the last few seasons, Beaufille has successfully slipped out from under the radar and, personally, I think their consistently great lookbooks (shot by Sarah Blais) have a lot to do with that. From the incredible art direction to the perfect casting – these images really capture the essence of Beaufille. As always, the silhouette is key – Chloe and Parris Gordon have carved out a niche for strong, powerful shapes with touches of sensual sensitivity. Voluminous, flared sleeves are balanced with bare shoulders or a tiny, slither of a cut-out across one rib. The effect is stunningly beautiful, but not in an obvious or blatant way – in fact, more handsome.
This season, alongside the neutrals; white, ecru, latte, for which she is known, Ryan complimented her palette with a splash of Bordeaux. There has been a lot of red so far this season. While retaining the gorgeous, long, lithe silhouette of seasons past, Roche is toughening up her lady just a touch for Fall 2017 with darker hues and a few sets of sharp shoulders – on dresses with deep v-necks and butter-soft suede blazers (with matching pants, of course). Still sickeningly sweet (in a good way, don’t get me wrong), but no ballerina business this time round.
As per, there are no real surprises at Protagonist – though the *serious* quality speaks for itself. What I’d give for a perfectly unforgiving cream satin sheath dress, or the pristine tailored pitch-black suit. Georgia Lazzaro creates clothes with desire and sensuality -and a closet filled with Protagonist, while relevant today, would last you a lifetime. No gimmicks here.
If the world of pop-culture salutes Queen Bey, the fashion community heralds VB (or at least I do). That is, as the sovereign of polished, not-too-done (nor undone, by any means) chic. The combination of flowing ‘midaxi’ (lol) skirts, oversized knits and slouchy boots is a look I’m seriously rooting for.
RAG & BONE
Instead of a traditional runway show, Marcus Wainwright opted for an exhibition of images in which several Rag & Bone muses (and himself) wore the collection. While ditching the conventional show or presentation seems forward-thinking, and it is, it also felt somewhat nostalgic. Images of another New York City rise to mind – one I experienced via screen and, probably, you did too – of late night gallery openings, cocktails and supermodels. This nostalgia reflected also in the gritty flash photography and cool, casual styling, but stepped past the stereotyped 90s throwback train. A broad collection of denim, shearling jackets, suiting, tailored wool coats, fur-lined camo parkas, leathers, silk slips and camisoles, tweed twinsets and even a poncho-scarf. These are clothes to be lived in, and for those much cooler than you or I.