NY Fashion Week came back making the legendary City that Never Sleeps vigorously alive, for once. More than 500 fashion shows were planned marking Fall in NY the best end to a long summer.
Vogue’s Fashion Night Out
Vogue’s Fashion Night Out felt like New Year’s Eve and sparkled smiles over dollar spending. Back to school, back to business, Anna Wintour got it right. The streets were filled with good taste and free champagne, the feast we all wished for the night Obama won the elections.
In a country with wounded economy, the anticipation and expectation for US designers to reflect on ways to deal with a recession is still apparent. American media were tough judges on last season’s fashion shows but transformed their bitterness to openhanded compliments in their current reviews. While major budget cuts continue, shows managed to impress with simplicity and elegance. It could be the season, but minimalism may never be given a better chance to be appreciated. Promising young designers and acclaimed seniorities made us fast forward to Spring, impatient to dive into their collections.
Best use of fluorescent lights, unpleasing choice of music, metallic fabrics on earthy , a cockpit of uniforms ready to take off. Presenting his collection at the legendary Milk Studios, Mr. Tell talked to us about his inspiration. “It’s a blend of Dan Flavin and Star Trek, a Parisian woman goes to the moon. The combination of stretch and non-stretch fabrics provides comfort and elegance that reflects on the look and functionality of this collection. Flavin is apparent on the lighting of the show but we used fixtures on several angles to separate from his sculptures”
While almost anything presented at the Park Avenue Armory is geared by inevitable success, Yohji Yamamoto’s line for Adidas drew handfuls of pleased eye-candy guests and achieved momentum. Rufus Wainwright, Casey Spooner, Terry Richardson, Zinedine Zidane, Tyson Ritter, Slava Mogutin and the 13 year old blogger Tavi, to only name a few. Obviously shadowed by the upcoming Word Cup 2010, Mr. Yamamoto drew inspiration by the movement of the net after a goal. Clothes were loose and airy, often trapping the body or allowing it to move freely. Long dresses in bright orange and basketball boots contrasted soccer balls and earthy colored sweat pants. Camouflaged into a raw stadium installation the Armory echoed the US national anthem first to be followed by Guns Ν’ Roses’ Mr Brownstone. The remaining soundtrack paid homage to Michael Jackson and favorite national anthems. For a moment we were forced to adapt a faded patriotism, like the paint chipping off the wooden floor horses once danced on. To mark an epilogue, Yohji passed a gold soccer ball to Zidane and invited him to take a shot at a goal towards the ceiling-dropped net. A “paparazzi” served as the goalkeeper and the net moved to trigger applause.
Greeks are typically prejudiced when it comes to Greek fashion designers. Leave it to Vassilios Kostetsos to silent all negative forecasts. For his first NY show, Mr. Kostetsos declared Phidias as his main inspiration. “I wanted to break off the cliché folklore image of Greece, typically presented with Hellenistic tunics. I love the future and wanted to present the future through my new discovery of latex. With new philosophy on drapery, I have crafted women as goddesses and sculptures of Phidias.” Beize, derived by the Parthenon marbles, governed the color palette. Sandals and heels designed by Haris Kazakos for Vassilios Kostetsos complimented the overall absence of strong Grecian references. Looking her best, Yanna Darrilis starred as the executive producer of the show while a teary Kalomira declared her pride of seeing a Greek designer at the NYFW. The overall unpleasing club anthem playilist, designed by Maggie Haralabidou, turned emotional with Kotsetsos’ personal choice of an epilogue. Monika’s “Over the Hill” found hands clapping to the beat and eyes ready to break in tears.
Perhaps the most reasonable response to the environmental and economical clouds above us, TELFAR stood out for its wise use of found materials and organic fabrics. Simple one-size-fits-all approach, enriched with humor and fierce attitude. We might never wear clothespins as a hair accessory and plastic bagged cardboard shoes, but who said style can’t be found on the street? Felix Burricheter of PIN-UP and Fantastic Man magazines, local resident DJs and the crème of underground retro fashion scene outlined the walls where Dia Center for the Arts once had its museum shop (now Fashion Art Gallery).
The 12-year NYFW veteran obeyed mass demands and moved his show to the main tent. Massively overbooked, forming endless lines of hopeless fashionistas, Custo stole the night and provided some interesting people watching. Under the title “The Air Show”, Mr. Custo Dalmau presented a collection inspired by light and movement. Glossy fabrics and daring prints decorated men’s suits while tassels and fringes adorned women’s dresses and coats. The parade of tiny bikinis and colorful shorts emitted dance energy in the haze of the blinking LED colored stripes of the background.
The so-called reincarnation of Studio 54 weekly party (free drinks until midnight, no cover) dressed up to match up with out of town guests. Famous for the homemade couture costumes, Kenny Kenny and Susanne Bartsch’s dance heaven attracted a younger crowd of style that almost became the club’s wallpaper until the wee hours. Even party resident LadyFag looked as amazed as a first timer. The still alive Club Sandwich crowd joined the party at 2am, bringing a Parisian aura to Soho. You could almost spot Warhol among the boys.
Club Sandwich Party
The monthly naughty party from Paris was in town for fashion week and every style kid struggled to make it on the guest list. Once more nested at the private club inside a townhouse downtown, the multilevel party took off for the city of lights under the spins of DJ Loic Masi. Promoters and organizers Marc Zaffuto and Emmanuel D’orazio dressed in black suits and orange afro wigs entertained guests accompanied by a pink feathered Olympia Solange. Amanda Lepore, Catherine Baba, Sophia LaMar, designers Richard Chai and Alexander Wang, ambitious models and brave dancers partied their hearts out making sure no hangover will defeat their attendance to next day’s shows.