Stunning, jarring, intriguing, scary — all apt descriptors for hullaballoo that has been the latest iteration of New York Fashion Week. To provide some nuanced imagery about the past week, your Daily Style writers have compiled a few of their favorite collections that graced this season’s runway.
Kith and is a stark contrast from Fashion Week’s traditional mainstays — 90s hip-hop and sneaker couture is arguably making a fairly assertive comeback, but Kith founder Ronnie Fieg’s longstanding embrace of the aesthetic separates himself from his more haute colleagues. Largely for that very reason, Kith’s New York debut was met with a flurry of surprise and intrigue. In embracing and celebrating the label’s newfound stage (and audiences), Fieg took the opportunity to craft an experience, stylized “KITHLAND,” that deviated far from the conventions of a typical runway show, streaming his new digs online and allowing fans to relive the runway experience via virtual reality at one of his many flagship Manhattan stores. With an audience that boasted the likes of Iman Shumpert and Ja Rule, Fieg had much of the modern hype machine intently watching for what he had in store. He split his show into three different offerings — “City,” “Mountain” and “Beach” (for his upcoming Miami flagship store), respectively. The show conveyed much of Fieg and Kith’s bread and butter, showcasing a cohesive mix of flashy sneakers and a throwback to ’90s street culture. Kith has been experiencing a gradual rise in clout and popularity among Manhattan and streetwear’s more cultured patrons, but in Kithland, Fieg cemented his label’s newfound status among fashion’s “nouvelle élite.”
— Anay Katyal
Tommy Hilfiger was the talk of day three of New York Fashion Week as he debuted the brand’s first ever “see-now-buy-now” collection, called #TOMMYNOW. The designer, well known for going above and beyond with runway design, featured a carnival theme to set the stage for Hilfiger’s collaboration with supermodel Gigi Hadid. The 21-year-old Vogue regular sported a slew of looks that embodied the usual themes of Hilfiger’s design: all-American, nautical and classic.
Combining Hadid’s image with the brand allowed Hilfiger to appeal to a younger market. Hadid, a Victoria’s Secret Angel, gives the classic brand a youthful twist, especially since the Hilfiger brand has existed since 1985, and was in serious need of a revamp. Through the Fall 2016 collection, Hilfiger and Hadid provided several new personalities — for starters, the collection can be bought in stores right now and not in six months, as is usual with Fashion Week collections. Additionally, the clothes took Hilfiger’s classic look and made it attractive, comfortable and stylish. — Isobel Futter
Jason Wu’s spring 2017 collection is heavy on florals, but still breaks boundaries.
Wu’s spring collection is full of dichotomies, yet feels effortless and fluid. The collection begins with heavy navys paired with iridescent blues and shifts towards nudes and neons. Wu uses dark colors traditionally more suited for fall with lightweight fabrics — though this isn’t a new tactic for the designer, who relied heavily on stiff, dark shades in his spring 2016 collection. Perhaps the pops of color and nudes seen near the end of his show were a concession to the more traditional spring fare. His collection was focused on both the creation of flow through the use of draping and pairing with other pieces which use rigid neon lines to create structure. But despite the collection’s variety, it still feels cohesive, and new: florals are fresh. — Emma Kinery
Vera Wang showcased a monochromatic style at Fashion Week this year. The designer, who’s been moving towards collections solely in black and white in the past few years, definitely stuck to that theme. The looks were not intricate — simple skirts, shorts and cropped tops, paired with oversize jackets and blazers — but were chic and fitting to the brand’s minimalist theme. The designer also opted for a natural hair and makeup for the models, and all the models sported the same black socks and black boots. Overall, the designer chose for her entire show, collection and appeal all to adhere to “less is always more.” In doing so, spectators can focus on the clothes, what they bring to the wearer’s body and how the simplistic designs differ ever so slightly from one another. No surprises from Wang, as the brand played to its strengths and provided Fashion Week with an artistically modest, yet elegant and nuanced, collection. — Isobel Futter
The show began with perhaps the strongest look in the collection: a structured denim dress a la Britney Spears at the 2001 VMAs, except it was channeling elegance rather than gaudiness. That being said, not all of the pieces in the collection strode the same path. Herrera’s collection is mainly black and white, with some striped pieces feeling more circus than chic. The focus was on making the everyday picnic style feel evening and in that it succeeded, even if on the individual level it felt tired: at times the ties on several sleeves of the looks were a bit much. She made fabrics and patterns from the everyday — white blousey cotton, denim, gingham — into the spectacular. Herrera’s use of structure compensates for the areas which feel less refined and makes pieces like this black coat-dress shine. — Emma Kinery