Top Shows And Hot Trends At New York Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2018
This Fall, New York Fashion Week attempted to purvey the meaning of “America”. With political and physical forces displacing people around the country, designers tried to interpret these times with their own sense of an imagined future, or create an entirely new one. While NYFW lost four major fashion designers, it left more breathing space for fresh and holistic ones to make themselves known.
Fall. Ford. Fabulous. No better way to open NYFW. With his menswear suiting so widely recognizable and regarded, it wasn’t long before women wanted to look slick in their own way. The collection transitioned from polished sportswear to confident eveningwear. The jackets were cut beautifully and paired with feminine shifts and jumpsuits. Strong, statuesque shoulders and decadent sequins checked off the glam factor. There was a sense of audacity with the power Ford so fearlessly wields for fashion.
Creative director, Raf Simon’s collection ‘Sweet Dreams’ for an American institution, Calvin Klein was a beautiful nightmare. Through the lens of Hollywood, he caricatured the brave cowboys and cowgirls from Wild Wild West into an ambitious representation of what America’s socio-political climate is moving towards. Using textiles of rubber, denim, satin and cotton in quilted and knitted textures, the collection was filled with Western-style colour-blocked shirts, full trapeze skirts, nighties with touches of Andy Warhol’s art, vests and of course, the boots. Massive pom-pom bags by artist Sterling Ruby accented this dystopia.
Drenched in glittering darkness, Coach 1941’s collection paid homage to the spirit of New York. Life-size rooftops views from an alleyway of a set became the backdrop for creative director Stuart Vevers to celebrate another pop artist Keith Haring. Haring’s view on art was similarly democratic to Coach’s view on fashion. The artist’s stark works of lines were subtly incorporated in a refreshing 30’s charm combined with 80’s Americana. Satin, prairie slips, leather jackets and denim jeans were glamourised with sequins, lace, colour blocking, metallic embroideries and burnished hardware, giving way to a youthful celebration. There was also an archival revival of the classic mailbox bag, created in 1972.
Prominent for their experimental knits and abstract shapes, Mike Eckhaus and Zoe Latta’s brand has garnered a somewhat niche following owing to their all-inclusive ideology. While their clothes are usually characterised by subversive non-conformity, this collection delivered their seriousness towards refinement and formality. The brand’s signature styles consisted of denim, knits, and sheers, all patterned pristinely or slashed unabashedly for the millennials. Blazers were silhouetted with the 80’s in mind. Nudity and diversity, however, made for very interesting dialogues, as a very pregnant model walked bare-bellied.
Helmut Lang Seen by Shayne Oliver
Lang was famed for luxuriating everyday staples into minimalistic, unisexual works of kink. While there were similar references of bondage, fasteners, metallics, all-whites and tremendous amounts of black leather this time, resident designer Shayne Oliver’s deconstructed yet streamlined tailoring brought about much distinction. With daring asymmetric bras, seamless trousers and strappy harnesses came along snazzy parkas and jackets which balanced sensuality with drama. Patent bags to open up like brassieres, leather bibs and ring-binder briefcases accentuated the looks.
Marc Jacobs celebrated a quarter of a century in fashion this Fall, only proving that he’s here to stay. For this collection, Jacobs wandered through his mind in the dream world of tropical paradise, beyond the concrete of NYC. His florals for spring were truly groundbreaking, in their overscaled sizes, hyper-vivid colours, metallic trimmings and oodles of sequins. There was a combination of sportswear with couture silhouettes and an added suiting for clean, working measures. The turbans were a jibe at his past but the fanny packs were for nonchalant travellers. Like the artist he is, Jacobs had skillfully made the excessive look wearable.
One of the most wearable designers of today, Michael Kors’ collection was urbanely casual and ready for the jet-setter. Outfits were in breezy shades of pastels and easy silhouettes. Big tie-dye prints on cashmere looked fabulous on curvacious models such as Ashley Graham and Carolyn Murphy, subtle palm tree prints on gauzy slip dresses and slick blazers looked serene as the collection moved on to neutrals of navy, grey and black for men. All the elements easily crossed from daywear into eveningwear.
Fashion and cars seem like an unlikely pairing, don’t they? But here we had Ralph Lauren, whose fascination for the latter is only secondary to his love for the former, melding the two beautifully. The runway was lined with Lauren’s most prized possessions of Ferraris, Porches and an estimated $40 million Bugatti, with their beautiful bodies of clean curves and functional excellence. The clothes were as timeless and classic, with streamlined suiting in immaculate houndstooth and checks transitioning into eveningwear of full ball skirts and patent leather bustiers in primary colours of the 80s.
Inspired by interior decorator David Hicks, Tory Burch’s spring line was infused with colour and pattern. There was no shortage of the graphic prints seen on silk wraps, dresses, tunics and simple pool cover-ups. While the embroidery lay on the lighter side, the accessories, especially the fidget-spinner necklaces were a fun and humorous touch. There was a touch of symmetry that was easy to wear and great to flaunt.
Comprised of foursome Patric DiCaprio, Bryn Taubensee, David Moses, and Claire Sully, Vaquera’s show mused upon the search of an identity, which was quite in line with what the US has been facing for some time now. More so, it raved with energy and rebellion as it played with proportions, silhouettes and awkward details. The casting was unconventional, letting the brand’s followers know that in imperfections lie uniqueness. An oversized T-shirt featuring a sharpie drawing of Abraham Lincoln stood out brilliantly.
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