Day one proved to be a celebration of the woman but day two was all about the man. The biggest trend seen on this second day was menswear as ready to wear. At Tommy Hilfiger what we saw were shades of grey with pops of brown, orange, blue, and black, as well as the use of stripes, and circle-like plaid prints. Leather skirts and business pants were in store as well as menswear inspired outerwear. The collection was a bit like a woman putting on her man’s clothes the morning after, there’s just something about that imagery that has sex appeal. It was very masculine, but mistaken not, the clothing had a one hundred percent feminine fit.
Keeping with the same theme, Hilfiger also presented the same color palette at his men’s show, although this esthetic was a bit different. It was a cross between Indie rock and preppy style, it was very young and relaxed but very clean. Although the colors and cuts were fantastic, it was the innovative use of the toggle that made the collection standout. At Rebecca Minkoff outerwear was much the same, borrowing from mens’ coats. However the eclecticity of the leopard prints, greens, maroons, sheer textiles, and impressive wovens made this collection all the more provocative. Ironically, the only time skin was seen was when a plunging neckline appeared. With flirty skirts and innovative cuts, this was clearly the “how to manual” on being sexy without being raunchy. Very sophisticated and daring, this is a collection for no woman to miss.
Tommy Hilfiger Men’s (Left) Rebecca Minkoff (Right)
Unfortunately not all that glitters is gold, and this was literally the case at Farah Angsana. The only piece that was salvageable was the opening fur and that was only because it was hiding the atrocious dress beneath. Smells can repulse you, tastes can disgust you, beware this collection can blind you. It was as if a red, gold, and black prom piñata had exploded. It was too much embellishment, and silks used in an unclean, almost unfinished way. Luckily we had Norman Ambrose who showed us the right way to bedazzle your clothing. With gem encrusted dresses, fur-trimmed coats, and voluminous pieces, this collection was very mature and regal. At Tess Giberson what we saw was a wearable review although the pieces were a bit dated, it was a bit of every designers’ nightmare, “been there, done that.” Printed chiffon dresses, draped wraps, dull colors, the only innovation were the few coats featured. Although young, it was not fresh. But if it’s youth and innovation you fancy, head yourself over to Nicole Miller, with a mostly black collection featuring reds, blues, and metallic grays, the mix of cuts and shapes truly made for a show that every young city girl must see. With loose tops, fitted a-line skirts, and innovative necklines, there was definitely something for everyone.
Two collections that fell a bit short of expectation this season were Rebecca Taylor and Joy Cioci. Although the collections were quite wearable and attractive, they were a bit too safe then what we would’ve liked to have seen. At Taylor it was about dark colors, floral printed dresses, and skinny belted waists, it was almost a repetition of last season. Cioci was very demure with flawless ruffled skirts, girly chiffon dresses, and an impressive display of woven outerwear, but it was the use furs that made this show a road kill. Chanel had said that before you leave your house to take one thing off, there’s a reason why her esthetic works and this does not. At Cynthia Rowley we were rewarded with a very sophisticated but provocative collection. Much like Minkoff, there was much left to the imagination. With geometric printed skirts, and bold colored pieces, this collection was very strong, perhaps one of Rowley’s best shows to date. Although there wasn’t much newness, the use of textiles, and fine tailoring made this for a wardrobe that any woman would enjoy to wear. A bit business and a bit serious, but chic nonetheless.
Each season menswear is increasingly having more significance at New York Fashion Week. With Hilfiger having had his turn, Perry Ellis was now up. Although the label was once synonymous of duty-free shopping, it’s impressive to see how spot on with trends they can now be. Although it was very reminiscent of the Z by Zegna’s show in Milan last month, the range in textiles, colors, and cuts made for a varied and updated show. It’s actually attractive and wearable, clothes that real men will want to wear.
The same way the day began, it ended, with menswear. The first show was Ruffian where we were served menswear inspired New York rock. Black laced dresses, tweed skirts, and silk blazers made for a very sassy but conservative collection with a full dose of edge. It was pretty, it was wearable, and it was young, definitely for today’s modern girl.
As the day concluded, Venexiana officially closed the night. Much like Ruffian it was about sophisticated rock. With leather skirts, fur coats, black printed pieces, and purple sequined dresses, the collection turned out to be a tad theatrical as always but very wearable for the most part. Farah Angsana could take a lesson or two from the veteran designer. Daring necklines and silhouette sculpting dresses truly made this show a treat. Although very much for the daring, it’s a show no one should miss. As day one was about the woman, and day two about the man, what will day three bring in store?