Picking up where we left off yesterday, after spending an hour or two re-caffeinating and attempting to catch up on emails I felt infinitely less frazzled by the time I arrived at off-site NYFW venue, the Skylight at Moynihan Station for the Rag & Bone show. Inside the amazing venue the atmosphere has taken on a party feel and I had a good laugh catching up with the London team before taking my seat on the second row and counting how many people were sporting Rag & Bone’s distinctive Harrow boots. I lost count pretty quickly as every other person was in a pair, the leather trouser count also swiftly reached double figures. I’ll admit, I felt a bit of a prat in my pink floral frock but hey, at least you couldn’t miss me. Luckily I wasn’t alone in my day glo outfit choice, Purple Fashion Creative Director, Paula Goldstein was wearing an incredible, neon orange Matthew Williamson ensemble and happened to be seated next to me, no doubt confirming all stereotypes about “quirky” Brits.
Rag & Bone SS14
Eventually the lights went up and Sam Rollinson opened the show in an gobsmackingly chic ice white number with black accessories and crisp pleat detailing. This clever subversion of a preppy-in-theory style set the time for a truly ingenious show. What I personally adore about Rag & Bone is that they do the whole androgynous, downtown thing brilliantly but still offer pieces that appeal to blouse aficionados like myself. Admittedly there weren’t many tops that could really be termed “blouses” in this collection but Markus Wainright and David Neville’s slick take on urban tailoring offered fluid silks in palest blush and pops of neon that got my heart racing.
Rag & Bone SS14
Evidently fashion’s obsession with all things 90s won’t be disappearing anytime soon but Rag & Bone’s take on it felt different and infinitely more up my street than what we’ve seen before. Polo shirt style collars and cricket jumpers came reimagined in leather and neoprene with softly sculpted silhouettes that subverted associations with prep. Bias cut, shimmering spaghetti strap slip dresses were paired with fierce ankle boots and luxed up satchels in shades of lilac and cream had just a hint of school girl about them, a look I’d like to be all over come spring. Crop top fans will be happy to hear they won’t be going anywhere either and Rag & Bone’s leather version had “cult hit” written all over it. Owning pretty much any of this collection is guaranteed to make you feel incredibly smug about your sheer hipness and as for those croc accessories, where, when and how can I pre order?!
Day 2 was certainly a marathon and at 6pm, I still had two more shows ahead of me. After grabbing a high speed bite to eat and while attempting to Instagram and answer emails simultaneously I headed downtown for Helmut Lang at the Pace Gallery.
Helmut Lang SS14
Shuddering at the memory of the snowstorm outside Helmut Lang last season I took my seat and waited for the show to begin. On the FROW were the usual coterie of Editors, Helmut clad hipsters and a moody looking Taylor Momsen. After a few minutes I was bumped up too which, being the petty loser I am, made me very happy indeed. It also enabled me to really appreciate the incredible detail, skill and quality of material involved in creating such a powerfully minimalist collection. Stark, crisp and cut with razor sharp precision, paired with pool sliders (also evidently sticking around for SS14) and the most incredibly python clutches. Leather was expertly manipulated to the point of resembling tailored cotton and zip detailing added just a touch of athleticism. Another major trend I’ve picked up on, or rather would have been blind to miss, is sheer gauzy fabrics with strategically placed silk panelling. Helmut Lang delivered a toughened up take on the look with such a no nonsense feel to it you’d almost forget that the wearer has virtually no clothes on.
Helmut Lang SS14
We all filed out of Helmut Lang and for some unknown reason I set off towards MIlK Studios at speed without bothering to check if the show was actually there. Surprise, surprise it wasn’t and I had the very annoying experience of walking back the way I came to the SUNO NY venue, Centre 548, literally 50 metres from Helmut Lang’s. Rather frustrating, not to mention painful thanks to the chronic blisters I’d already acquired but I certainly wasn’t going to give up, go home and miss the SUNO show! Centre 548 is a truly awesome venue but good God is getting everyone in a long process. The Chelsea loft is accessible only via a freight lift which has to be operated by a rather angry man in uniform, only fits about ten people and moves incredibly slowly. That said, once everyone’s in it’s totally worth the hassle and the white washed, open plan space provided was simply perfect for showcasing the explosion of print which have become SUNO’s much coveted trademark.
SUNO NY SS14
Well it was prints I wanted and prints I got! Table cloth patterns have never looked so covetable but they weren’t the only eye popper on the menu by a long way. The collection was a riot of texture, colour and pattern, gloriously clashing in a way that should be wrong but is oh so right in the capable hands of Max Ostwerweis and Erin Beatty. The duo served up pleated crisp cotton, laser cut leather, pink and metallic floral brocade and shimmering metallic embroidery. How all that can end up exuding a cool tomboy vibe is beyond me but somehow Max and Erin manage it!
SUNO NY SS14
We’ve seen a lot of in-your-face prints and bold colour these past few seasons but SUNO does the joyful stuff I love in a way that feels fresh, new and totally fash forward. Boxy silhouettes and Nicholas Kirkwood shower sandals add a touch of geek chic in a deliciously uncontrived manner and if the deafening applause that followed the finale was anything to go by, I wasn’t the only person smitten. For me, SUNO NY’s SS14 offerings epitomised what makes them so in-demand and earned their well deserved CFDA award this year; skill, boundless imagination and the balls to go a different way to every other label, refreshing and inspiring to see. I think it’s safe to say that SUNO just rocketed right up my most wanted labels list!
Love Ella. X
Images via Style.com