Fashion Focus: New York Fashion Week

September 22, 2015

By Sarah Tinoco

Despite Labor Day being in the past and the drops in temperature previewing the fall season, New York City jumped ahead in spirit to the spring/summer of 2016 commencing New York Fashion Week.

The week kicked off with BCBG Max Azria’s southern California-inspired summer palette and evidence that bucket hats have trickled back up into high fashion.

School of the Art Institute of Chicago graduates and designers Shane Gabier and Christopher Peters of Creatures of the Wind showcased a contemporary collection of black and white with pops of red and orange. Chicago-born designer Wes Gordon featured similar bursts of orange and yellow in addition to loose and relaxed silhouettes.

Designer of the moment Rosie Assoulin staged her presentation in a drained pool behind a school and featured her signature dramatic sleeves, trousers and iridescent Swarovski crystal embellishments.

Peter Copping, Creative Director of Oscar de la Renta, paid tribute to de la Renta with a youthful Spanish-influenced collection designed around the concept of carnations, the late designer’s favorite flower.

The trends of long lengths and athleisure were present at Lacoste and Public School as well as 3.1 Phillip Lim and Alexander Wang, both of which brands celebrated their 10th anniversaries as established designers.

Lady Gaga’s longtime stylist Brandon Maxwell debuted his first collection which included power suits with deep v-necks and striking gowns in a palette of black, ivory, and off pink.

Public School’s Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne introduced their first collection for the newly rebranded DKNY in the West Concourse of the World Trade Center. Their sleek, urban collection included menswear-inspired separates, pinstripes, New York City graphic prints and long lengths in black, white and gray.

Kanye West surprised the fashion industry later in the week with Yeezy Season 2, his second collection shown in New York. West’s presentation replicated his previous military-like show with utilitarian silhouettes in army green and nude. Unlike the first one, this collection was unaffiliated with Adidas Originals with the exception of some of the shoes debuted.

The most anticipated show of the week was French fashion house Givenchy that took place a few days before the anniversary of September 11 showcasing women’s wear, menswear, and haute couture. Givenchy’s creative director Riccardo Tisci appointed performance artist Marina Abramović as the artistic director of the show to honor the tragedy through the set design. Abramović staged the show on Pier 26 with a hopeful view of the Freedom Tower. The entire set was constructed with recycled materials and performance artists were staged above the audience, which included nearly 800 non-industry insiders and fashion students. The show was brought together with live music from six different musicians from around the world to capture Tisci’s vision of inclusivity, hope and love for the collection and brand.