Four days into New York Fashion Week, and I was a little underwhelmed by what I had seen so far. It’s not totally surprising. Out of the four major fashion weeks, I must say New York hosts by far the most commercially marketable and conceptually safe brands. With a few notable exceptions, American design brings up the suburban chic of Michael Kors and Coach, the classic preppiness of Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger, and the red carpet friendly designs of Zac Posen and Vera Wang. Although their influence on international fashion can’t be underestimated (hello, Isabel Marant), contemporary American design rarely surprises like its British and French counterparts.
Leave it to Alexander Wang to rock my fishnets off, and with an (almost) all-black collection at that. I was relieved to see him step away from the sportiness of his past collections. Honestly I haven’t felt excited about anything he’s designed, for Balenciaga and for his own line, in a while for that very reason. It was ballsy of him to work with all black, as they don’t photograph well and can look flat on the runway. He was smart about it, though, using a variety of fabrics (matte and shiny) and embellishing them with hardware. Wang has always had a great sense for styling, and the stacked boots with the wet hair and slightly undead-looking makeup worked perfectly with the goth-inspired clothes. Standouts included the quilted long coat and mini skirt, the long velvet dress with fringe, the leather culottes worn with a leather-bibbed top, and of course, the naughty chain mail dresses towards the end. Look for those in a million editorials come fall.
Images via style.com