New York Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2020: The Best Moments And Takeaways
1. Musicians ruled at NYFW this season
To close their ’80s-tinged collection, Coach enlisted legendary punk goddess Debbie Harry to perform – aptly in a trenchcoat covered with the unmistakable brushstrokes of fellow ’80s icon Jean-Michel Basquiat. Up-and-comer and green advocate Collina Strada tapped on Paramore frontwoman Hayley Williams to sprinkle her magic over the show venue – an underground “garden” and the infamous masked country singer Orville Peck presided over at Michael Kors.
P.S. according to Vogue, Basquiat’s niece, Jessica Kelly, made her runway debut at the same Coach show – such a thoughtful gesture beyond just getting the permission to use Basquiat’s prints from his estate.
2. Case in point: musicians as models
But leave it to Marc Jacobs – who wrapped up NYFW with a superb ’60s-by-way-of-’90s-minimalism collection – to land one of the most Instagrammed moments of the week – having Miley Cyrus model in his show in a bra top and nonchalantly dragging a zebra print along.
3. Utilitarianism popped up in unexpected places...
Such as a bedazzled folding chair, worn as a extra-long necklace (pictured above) at one of New York’s most exciting labels of the moment – Area. Meanwhile, art crowd favourite Rachel Comey opted for oversized spoons bent to become necklaces and the effect was strangely alluring.
4. On the other end of the spectrum: old-school couture sensibilities amped up
Despite all the bemoaning in the media about a lacklustre NYFW line-up this season (for example, mega A-lister Tom Ford decamped to Los Angeles to show his collection right before the Oscars, all the better to serve his movie star clientele), it actually allowed for more attention on a new generation of designers. Some of New York’s most promising names of the moment – Christopher John Rogers, Area and the under-the-radar newbie Puppets and Puppets (pictured above) – all served up super extravagant interpretations of old-world couture silhouettes, citing legendary couturiers like Madame Gres as inspiration.
Where these show-stoppers will be produced (and sold) is another question, but at least they brought the excitement to NYFW, which is often typecasted as the most commercially-minded city out of the Big Four fashion capitals.
5. There's an innovative new way to approach sustainability
Last season, probably the key message among designers was to prove how sustainable they’re trying to be. Yes, no doubt it was for virtue signalling but some brands did it better than others – Gucci’s carbon neutral initiative being an obvious example.
At small independent labels however, their resources are limited. One brand in particular, came up with an innovative idea – indie darling Eckhaus Latta partnered second-hand luxury retailer the RealReal; the latter provided the shoes for the show, including vintage Chanels and Manolo Blahniks, which might explain the heavily ’90s footwear (think peep-toe kitten pumps). And yes, those secondhand shoes will get another chance at life – they’ll be sold on the RealReal.
In the bigger scheme of things on the sustainability front, this is obviously a tiny gesture but it’s quite a refreshing idea, no? Here’s hoping more such efforts will proliferate in future seasons.