Displaying items by tag: New York
Wednesday, 26 January 2011 14:24

Prabal Gurung: ready made layering

Written by Daniel P Dykes

Under the warm lights the catwalk is glowing. Not too strange a fact in itself - lights at a fashion show always have ability to give you a tan - but this is certainly the first catwalk I've noted to have a textured catwalk, such is my vantage point. And so it is that Prabal Gurung's fall 2011 New York fashion week showing opens on a marbled catwalk and Karlie Kloss emerges, like the goddess that she is, to slink down the catwalk and open this showing. And she does so in a red, one shouldered statement dress. The kind that you might label as reminiscent of the recent trend if it weren't for the fact that, with the cut slanted across her chest, she does it so much justice.

Statement red soon fades to winter off-whites and black. Black lace and black sheers on which the opening is reduced to an accent colour on the pieces. And this is collection with accents galore. Mostly accents of layers, with different cloths layered upon one another. And there in lies its real strength. Most winter collections look to provide fashionisers with a plethora of layers, conscious that they're going to spend autumn and winter taking layers on and off as they go about their business. Prabal Gurung has by passed that, instead mostly creating layers within each indivual piece. Sometimes they're in silvers, other times in crochet. Sometimes they're matt, though more often with a sheen to them, though pieces even exist at the other end of the spectrum in all their sparkled glory. On the whole though, the collections layers are done in ruffles but, at their best, done in sheers.

karlie kloss new york fashion week

And those sheers give rise to Prabal's take on the season's sheer maxi dress, while elsewhere in the collection the forest greens that many another designer are using are present alongside two-tone bell bottom which, admittedly, aren't the best take on that trend available to fashionisers.

We'll have all our photos from Prabal Gurung's autumn (fall) / winter 2011 / 2012 showing online shortly, and will update this article once we do.

Published in pictures
Sunday, 27 February 2011 21:49

Rebecca Taylor: feminine, not girly

Written by Tania Braukamper

Managing to infuse fuchsia, florals and bows into a collection and still have it come off as feminine - but not girly - is something of a feat in my book. Rebecca Taylor did it for fall 2011, seemingly without any hassle, resulting in a sense of refinement that was neither too neat not too fussy.

Taylor's fall 2011 look isn't for everyone, granted - from the cherry red lips and blushing babydoll cheeks to the youthfully waved hair, the modest hem lengths to the flowing cuts, this is pretty - not sexy. Taylor's girl is sophisticated. She can look just as cool in a pair of semi-sheer flared pants and a long-line slouchy top as she does in a minidress. At her New York fashion week show Taylor proved one thing - for those who can pull off a relaxed feminine look, she's not to be overlooked.

rebecca taylor fall 11

Click on the gallery below to view the rest of the photo coverage of Rebecca Taylor's fall 2011 runway show.

Published in pictures
Tuesday, 22 February 2011 13:15

Vivienne Tam: soft futurism

Written by Daniel P Dykes

Under a spotlight each model takes to the catwalk. From afar the all dark tonality of the pieces they wear must look plain, but up close the fabrication, rich and textured, is far more obvious. So too, I suspect, are the futuristic cuts that make up the opening pieces in Vivienne Tam's fall 2011 showing at New York fashion week. In these pieces the fabric is layered and sculpted around the neck and shoulders, each one giving the impression that the model may have just stepped onto the catwalk from some future period of time. Not the dystopian future that typically inspires fashion, but a refined one, each piece maintaining a sense of femininity. It's a shame, then, that this luxurious detailing may be lost on those not in a prime viewing position.

It's not all dark clothing against a dark catwalk however. Whites and greys present a pop, doubly so on this catwalk. These two colours and their variants are mixed through the collection's simple pieces, in its pieces that are perfectly inline with the crochet clothing trend, and are additionally layered under sheers and laces. Also to be seen is the odd red piece and winter prints, but it's collection's dresses with a Far Eastern, Kimono-like tilt that really stand out. They're impressive for both their detail and movement, a fact made more prominent by the spotlight falling upon the models whose frames they are draped across.

vivienne tam fall 2011

Of it all, however, the collection's cutaway elements are what really stand out. Lavilshly applied as detail to pieces, be it as shoulder caps or full sleeves, it's a motif carried through into the collection's footwear. Each model, from as best as I could tell, took to the catwalk in a pair of boots of black or plum colouring, each pair featuring cutaway sections up the shin.

All our pictures from Vivienne Tam's autumn (fall) / winter 2011 / 2012 catwalk can be seen by clicking on the thumbnails below and clicking through the gallery.

Published in pictures
Thursday, 20 January 2011 05:20

Nicole Miller: Return of the Futurism

Written by Daniel P Dykes

If you're a fan of modernist fashion that leans towards a fusion of the minimalistic and the futuristic, then Nicole Miller's fall 2011 collection might take your fancy. It might also take your fancy if you're a Star Wars fan, a grouping of people whose collective noun I clearly do not know, given the layered and belted finishes of some looks seem to be begging to have a lightsaber clasped at their hip.

So it was that on the catwalk of New York fashion week that Miller presented looks that have a toned down silhouette and whose embellishments opened in the form of slashes of colour before transitioning into pieces where pleats and cloth served to catch the eye.

nicole miller fall 2011

As a whole this can be a rather hard collection to look over - the digital winter prints don't seem cohesive with most people's wardrobes, while the styling has hard overtones of a science fiction genre that doesn't, if stereotypes are to be believed, generally appeal to the fairer sex. However, take each piece on its own merits, particularly those intended for layering such, and you'll get a sense for where Nicole Miller's autumn (fall) / winter 2011 / 2012 collection can fit within your own wardrobe.

Peruse the entire collection, including detailed shots, by clicking on the thumbnails below and browsing through the gallery.

Published in pictures
Sunday, 23 January 2011 02:54

Derek Lam: wearability perfected

Written by Daniel P Dykes

Update: You'll now find all the catwalk pictures, including a number of detail shots, at the bottom of this article.

A mix of the sleek and the sumptuous, Derek Lam's autumn / fall 2011 collection took to the runway of New York fashion week with look after look streaming out onto the catwalk with such frequency that it hosted up to four models at any given time. It's unlikely that most would have noticed, however, with each look clearly capturing the focus of the crowd. Where others have turned to excessive detail to do just that, Lam's next collection is one of subtlety. At times minimalist and at other times classically detailed, Lam opted to to avoid any one aesthetic. Instead, throughout this collection, different looks and feels are tied together by overt quality and an obvious wearability that ranged sumptuous furs to jumpsuits with a sheen.

derek lam fall 2011

There is, though, one component of the collection that stood out amongst all else: its free flowing gowns. Streaming down the catwalk it was easy for the models who wore them to do them justice, the hemline of each moving majestically as the gowns were driven on by the inimitable walks of the likes of Karlie Kloss.

You can see all our pictures from Derek Lam's autumn (fall) / winter 2011 / 2012 catwalk showing by clicking on the thumbnails below and browsing through the gallery.

Published in pictures
Sunday, 20 March 2011 18:25

Max Azria: toned down

Written by Daniel P Dykes

Max Azria's fall 2011 catwalk didn't so much begin as it did pound into life, the bass of the catwalk track reverberating in my ear drums in much the same way I can still hear a long night out in the confines of a small European night club long after it has ended. Not subtle, but then most things associated with the Azria surname tend not to be. But such is the cost of becoming best known for defining precisely how sexy a bandage dress can be.

In reality, however, the Max Azria label (designed by husband and wife team Max and Lubov Azria) has been anything but overt of late. Take a look at their last autumn / winter offering: minimalist, delicate, and with flow. And so it was that at New York fashion week, on a catwalk of temporary floorboards walked some of the best models in the city, and draped loosely across their frames was a collection that was precisely the opposite of what springs to mind when you think 'Azria'. What was unveiled is a collection whose hems are modest. A collection whose fabrics are spun in greys, blacks and olives. Detailed yes, layered yes, but overt no.

What, then, did it offer up?

max azria fall 2011

Not much of what you'd expect. In fact, not only was there not a little black dress in sight, there was barely a little dress to speak of. Instead, the Max Azria collection you can expect for the coming season opened with block tailoring, and continued those two elements throughout many of the other pieces. Where it wasn't tailored and it wasn't blocked, it was loose with the collection's tonality applied to odd, un-Azria feeling pieces such as jumpsuits and work overalls.

But there still has to be some flash of skin in order for it to truly be a Max Azria collection. And so the was. Yet instead of coming in a figure hugging shape, the flash of skin came courtesy of thigh high splits applied to skirts cut below the knee, and also courtesy of the slightest use of sheer cloth within the range. That, however, is slight in the sense of repetition given this Azria label closed on a look designed to stick in one's mind: model Jac taking to the catwalk in a sheer maxi dress. But even then the impact was reduced courtesy of the dress being paired with a heavy winter overcoat.

To peruse the entire Max Azria autumn (fall) / winter 2011 / 2012 collection click on the thumbnails below.

Published in pictures
Wednesday, 09 February 2011 12:56

Vera Wang: soft winter

Written by Daniel P Dykes

We're back to back with shows today so haven't had a chance to write up all our thoughts on each collection (yet). In the meantime, however, you can peruse one of today's big collection, as we have our pictures from Vera Wang's fall 2011 showing at New York fashion week online now.

vera wang fall 2011

Click on the thumbnails below to see all the pictures from Vera Wang's autumn (fall) / winter 2011 / 2012 collection.

Published in pictures
Monday, 04 April 2011 00:55

Jenny Packham: sensual intoxication

Written by Daniel P Dykes

"Men cluster to me like moths around a flame, and if their wings burn I know I'm not to blame." -- Marlene Dietrich

You're promising a lot when your show's notes open with such a quote. And Jenny Packham delivered. The British designer, giving crystal clear insight into her global ambitions by showing away from the European fashion week circuit, kicked off her New York fashion week catwalk on a mild, Monday morning with a collection is anything but. An autumn / winter 2011 collection this might be but, designed for the girl who thrives on the social scene, it's devoid of typically wintery pieces and instead offers up a youthful, upper class take on party dress and statement leggings, one that pays no credence to the weather as each piece is crafted solely for wearing indoors, in rooms of note.

jenny packham autumn 2011

And craft is precisely the right word to use to describe this collection. From the seats the quality of each piece, from the fabrication to the embellishments, is obvious. The level of craft needed to create the most detailed of them, such as those where beading is layered over tulle in a pattern visually akin to a spider web, in the collection is overt. It's also broad, with embellishment lavishly applied to pieces ranging from floor length frocks to leggings. So intricate is the detail, in fact, that the pieces that don't offer it in the guise of French lace or antique beads, such as a floor length dress from the collection, seem oddly out of place. But though the cuts are meant to catch the eye they aren't all of the figure hugging variety that such a quality typically necessitates. Instead the mini dresses offer up a slim fit whose fabric is relaxed, giving each a movement on the catwalk that equals the slink the models who wear them have so perfected.

But this is a collection that better communicates precisely who it is intended for. Jenny Packham's craft is not, for a moment, intended for the average. Looking at each piece instead gives you a mental picture of a girl who is the life of the party, an extrovert with more friends and contacts then can reasonably be stored in her iPhone or Blackberry, the girl who works to keep her figure perfect, to whom appearance is close to Godliness. And she's young, at least at heart, for this is a collection that is for the girl who is comfortable showing off a little bit of skin - the collection's daring cuts demand it. But daring shouldn't be interpreted as meaning dangerously short or plunging. Such pieces are there to be sure, but for every short hemline there's a backless dress or thigh high split daring you to want to get to know the girl wearing it more or, if you're that way inclined, soliciting reactions of jealousy. That's how this Jenny Packham collections dares, but even then its real emotion strength is its ability to sensualise instead of sexualize. In person that's intoxicating

All our photos from Jenny Packham's autumn (fall) / winter 2011 / 2012 collection are now online, and can be seen by clicking on the thumbnails below and browsing through the gallery.

Published in pictures

Written by Daniel P Dykes

The fact that there in the front row sat Julia Restoin-Roitfeld, daughter of former Vogue Paris editor Carine Roitfeld, left me in no doubt that Kevork Kiledjian's New York fashion week showing would have visual impact. Those in the front row, when carefully invited, often give a hint of precisely what's in store, and Julia sat there in a hot little shoulderless number that mixed mesh with leather. And so Kevork Kiledjian gave us just the impact I expected, from his front row to his catwalk, from his music to his cuts.

Kiledjian's take on the coming fall 2011 season is a collection of dresses, leathers, lace and sheers, and flares. All of them, even those that failed to work in the face of better pieces from the same collection, are heavily sexed up. Simplistic, perhaps even crass, to say but that's precisely what this collection is about. Some pieces have micro short hems. Others are offered with trains that lashed behind the model as she pounded the catwalk. And between both cuts are some that are more demure in having floor length hems. But no matter the length of cut, it was clear that this is a collection all about defining precisely what a dress can be. In doing so it made it clear that this was a collection for women who simply have that it quality in abundance. The Restoin-Roitfelds of the world. The fashionisers with a rock-chic edge.

kevork Kiledjian autumn 2011

Rock-chic for autumn / winter 2011 tends towards one thing: motorcycle fashion. Kiledjian's collection offers it, but seldom at more than the detail level. While the collection includes the odd motorcycle jacket, other pieces aren't as overt. Take the collection's superbly cut leather pants. Motorcycle worthy? Generally. But these are cut with a flare, leaning them more towards the season's 1970s revival than towards the motorcycle trend they're compatible with. And the same can be said for most other pieces, such as the motorcycle jacket constructed of shearling that, thus, strikes you as more aviator than biker..

Sticking true to the rock chic effect there are plenty of other sexed up, youthful elements to be found. Sheer fabrics are in abundance, while the laces used give the same impression without actually revealing more than most women would choose to.

And there in lies a very good point about this collection: it's not for the wall flower. It takes confidence to take to the streets in purple leather pants. Equally so to go to a party in dresses so trim and tight (though, alas, for some people I've seen that seems to be less about confidence and more about not understanding their body shape). Across all pieces of the collection it takes confidence and the right figure to wear them.

This is a collection that perfects a rock-chic, black palette. More so, Kevork Kiledjian's collection is one that perfects black mini dresses. For no matter what hit the catawalk, from the sheer shirts to the perforated leather leggings, it was only the black mini dresses that had every woman in attendance unanimously attempting to will them into their wardrobe.

To see all of Kevork Kiledjian's autumn (fall) / winter 2011 / 2012 collection, click on the thumbnails below and browse through the photos.

Published in pictures
Thursday, 03 February 2011 03:24

Zang Toi: crowd pleaser

Written by Daniel P Dykes

The sun had long set on the city before we found ourselves at the last catwalk of the evening, Malaysian designer Zang Toi's autumn / fall 2011 showing. Generally speaking, the last New York fashion week show of any night that doesn't have an after party attached to it pulls only a small crowd. But here at the Lincoln Centre as the tent's roof rippled in response to the rising wind and photographers, tired after a 13 hour day, verbally took out their frustrations on one another, Zang Toi did the complete opposite. He pulled a crowd. An eager crowd. A crowd that left most people in the standing space unable to see a thing, so tightly packed in were they. But, more importantly, a crowd that loved his work and showed it by applauding piece after piece, time and time again.

zang toi autumn 2011

That applause gave Zang Toi's showing something of a point of difference. People generally don't clap this exuberantly at fashion parades, less so at those attached to fashion weeks where even the final applause, held when the designer emerges, often feels laboured as if to clap is to be un-chic. Toi received applause to a level that I've only seen at the filming of Project Runway finales - and even then the producer is insisting that you applause.

No one was insisting in this Lincoln Centre tent as both men's and women's pieces took to the catwalk in looks that started out being almost simplistic, where cut served as detail, before transitioning to pieces far more suited to occasions. As if to make sure that point wasn't missed the show closed with someone, not a model but a celebrity whose name I know not, closing the show in a gown that is certain to make a red carpet somewhere. And she closed this Zang Toi showing to a standing ovation. One that drowned out the sound of all else.

You can see all of Zang Toi's autumn (fall) / winter 2011 / 2012 collection by clicking on the thumbnails below.

Published in pictures
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