First Look: New York Fashion Week
By Jessica Mehalic Lucas
Not even a snowstorm could keep style addicts away from an eventful New York Fashion Week. Raf Simons awed with his Americana-themed debut at Calvin Klein, Joseph Altuzarra celebrated the complexities of women with a richly embellished Renaissance-meets-modern-day lineup and Michael Kors paid tribute to the strength and sensuality of all different types of women with an elegant parade of modern classics.
For his second see now, buy now show, Ralph Lauren whisked viewers away to a lush floral wonderland. Opening looks in cream, beige and almost golds referenced the desert, while cheetah-print satchels and python wedges exuded a safari vibe. Textural interest was prominent with distressed leather jackets and chunky knit mesh sweaters. But it was Lauren’s eveningwear that stole the show—a series of silky gowns in gold, bronze, purple and green, followed by shimmery floral prints.
A new romantic vibe ran throughout 3.1 Phillip Lim’s ultra-wearable collection with flounces, asymmetric hemlines and leather bustier corset tops. Lim’s talent for the transformative usage of accessories was evident in the way graphic statement earrings and chain-link belts counterbalanced delicate ruffles and lace. Shelve the skinny; his high-waisted baggy trouser promises to be an empowering pants silhouette in the next season.
Feminine but powerful resonated throughout Tory Burch’s show, inspired by Katharine Hepburn’s character in the 1940 film “The Philadelphia Story.” Burch’s own preppy Philadelphia upbringing also filtered into the polished assortment, marked by ladylike blouses and dresses, tailored trousers and gilded monogramming. Bows in the models’ hair and on their shoes added a sweetness to the sophisticated, classic collection, which brand devotees will love.
Oscar de la Renta’s new design duo Laura Kim and Fernando Garcia worked for many years with the designer before founding their own label, Monse, in 2014. They sequentially showed both fall collections, but all eyes were on their debut at de la Renta where they captured the brand’s signature dressed-up sensibility. Gowns and pantsuits enticed with sequins, prints and vibrant color. For purists, there was plenty of black and white, like a stunning strapless dress with a slit lined in jewels worn by show closer Bella Hadid.
Rag & Bone eschewed a traditional fashion show in favor of a photo exhibition and party to showcase the men and women’s fall line and celebrate the brand’s 15th anniversary. Oversized Polaroids featured the likes of Amber Valletta, Joan Smalls and Keri Russell in effortlessly cool Brit-influenced sportswear. Marcus Wainwright updated brand favorites with a focus on fabrication—oversized jeans in Japanese denim, bombers in technical nylon with a vintage effect, slick leather moto jackets, Linton tweed scarves and dresses.