So after months and months of wishing, waiting, and outfit planning I finally headed to the Big Apple on Tuesday for New York Fashion Week! Last September’s trip with GANT gave me a taste for the action and this time around, I’m here for the whole shebang. Having foolishly decide to move house just 2 days earlier, by the time me and my extremely overweight baggage arrived I was pretty exhausted but after a days exploring (read: ransacking J.Crew, getting extremely lost and drinking my own bodyweight’s worth of Starbucks iced lattes) I was ready and raring to hit the shows.
Skirt & Shoes: Topshop
Bag: Anya Hindmarch
Necklace: Anne Bowes Jewellery
New York Fashion Week day 1 got off to a fairly frantic start after a cocktail bar incident the previous night, evidently jet lag and Cosmopolitans don’t mix but frankly, I couldn’t resist. Unable to find a cab I braved the subway, arriving at Lincoln Centre sweaty, stressed and extremely late. Of course my panic was entirely unecessary it’s widely accepted fashion shows never, EVER start less than half an hour after their scheduled time so I took my seat in good time to see the latest creations from Nicholas K.
Design duo Nicholas and Christopher Kunz got the day off to an impressive start with an innovative take on utility style. The collection featured neutrals, drapery and rich earth tones, think high fashion nomads with an urban twist. The New York natives reimagined classic staples such as polo shirts, bomber jackets, hoodies and tracksuit bottoms, confirming that this Summer’s obsession with all things athletic has a few more seasons in it yet. Deconstructed silhouettes and technical fabrics were combined with silks, chiffons, brushed cottons and tribal prints making making for a New York meets Masai Mara vibe that was almost painfully hip.
Next up was BCBG Max Azria, a packed out show which delivered my first dose of pure fashion fabulousness. On the FROW I spotted Whitney Port surrounded array of stunners who I concluded must be famous due to the ensuing paparazzi frenzy. Almost forty minutes later, a classical remix of Blondie ‘Heart of Glass’ struck up and it was time for the show to begin. The show opened with an array of flowing, virginal white chiffon numbers toughened up with leather harness detailing, paving the way for a collection that offered up modern femininity with a hearty dose of vamp. Slinky silk numbers and lace panelling oozed femme fatal charm while minimalist accessories, khol rimmed eyes, mussed hair and lashings of leather supplied a bondage edge. Or as Style.com so succinctly put it “Fifty Shades of BCBG”.
By this point my energy levels had dropped big time so I hot footed it over to the nearest Starbucks, conveniently located directly outside Lincoln Centre. Evidently all my fellow fashion week-ers were also taking a break to indluge their caffeine cravings but my annoyance at having to spent twenty minutes queueing to get a latte was appeased by quite what an excellent mingling/people watching opportunity it was. One venti, skinny, triple shot, extra hot latte and 26 emails later it was time to head downtown for the Jenni Kayne presentation at Gary’s Loft. I’m ashamed to admit that Jenni’s not a designer I knew particularly well but having got up close and personal with her latest collection I can assure that’s all about to change! For SS13 the LA based designer offers up California cool with a city chic twist. There was colour pop tailoring, handpainted prints, berry hued supple leather and lightweight summer tweed perfectly styled with pointed toe flats and super cute retro shades. Looks that were preppy, polished and pinstriped sat comfortably alongside andrognyous, urban pieces and even one or two laidback numbers that would work for the beach. New fashion obsession? I think so.
I’m only one day in but can already conclude that compared to New York, London Fashion Week’s an absolute picnic. After a brief time out in Pret I dragged my sore feet (and head) back uptown to Lincoln Centre for my last show of the afternoon, Tadashi Shoji. The venue had been transformed with oriental inspired blue hued projections on the walls, setting the scene for a show that absolutely took my breath away. According to the show notes, for SS13 Tadashi would be taking us on a sartorial journey from Venice to X’ian with stops at Kazakhstan and Dunhuang along the way. Sounds unlikely? I thought so to, but that is exactly what he did. The collection may have been wanderlust inspired but it couldn’t have been further from gap year tragedy. The show opened with an array of embroidered lace dresses in a myriad of delectable hues encapsulating everything from scarlet, coral and delicate nudes through to deepest azure blue. With classic silhouettes and exquisite detailing, these are the kind of dresses that, should you ever be lucky enough to wear one, you’d probably refuse to ever take it off. The Kazakhstan segment brought with it mesmerizing Ikat prints and pleated skirts in kaleidescopic hues. By this point I was officially head-over-heels for Tadashi but he still had one more trick up his sleeve. Namely, an array of shimmering, extravagant, red carpet worthy creations providing a finale so stunning I felt genuinely moved.
By this point I was so exhausted it was all I could do not to make for the nearest taxi but in a fit of uncharacteristic frugality I decided to give the subway another go. Four (wrong) trains and an unintentional trip to Brooklyn later, I regretted that decision and won’t be attempting New York public transport again anytime soon!
Love Ella. X