New York Fashion Week launched the whirl of the world’s runways from September 8-14. Before we had even jetted to London, Paris and Milan, it was clear that in Spring/Summer 2017 we’ll be seeing plenty of color-checking and mind-warping print, contrasted with lashings of lace, crystals and floral embellishments.
Creatures of the Wind—aka design duo Shane Gabier and Christopher Peters—were the brightest star of day one. Their Angel collection brought an ethereal allure to the Grand Masonic Lodge, as idealized and polished beauty radiated from glowing, scrubbed-clean skin, sleek tailoring was given an otherworldly sheen more than 162,000 crystals incorporated into the fabric’s patterning. Monochrome Op art illusions and houndstooth check stamped with hand-embroidered floral lace appliqués kept the audience spellbound. As a finishing flourish, space age silver accessories sent the look stratospheric.
Also intent on grabbing our attention with eye-bending geometries, this time set in the dramatic industrial interior of the Skylight at Moynihan Station, was another double act: Ryan Lobo and Ramon Martin of Tome. Their entire collection was dedicated to bold print—checkerboard, gingham, stripes and plaid—much of it inspired by Malick Sidibé and Seydou Keïta, Malian photographers celebrated for their mid-20th-century portraits of African men and women wearing striking patterns. Again, the Sixties Op art of Bridget Riley was an influence, seen in the black-and-white optical effects. Movement was cleverly further accentuated with over 55,000 Swarovski crystals sewn into custom blazing-star motifs and sparkling Fishnet Banding.
The following day, September 12, saw Rosie Assoulin shift the tone all the way up to kaleidoscopic over in the Meatpacking District. Appropriately, given that her inspiration was the glorious summertime, a full-length shirt-dress that she had color-blocked with 142,000 crystals had us putting on our sunglasses. Deckchair stripes, crystal fringing on sandals and an outsize floppy sunhat—not to mention over 358,000 crystals—kept the collection sizzlin’ hot. And the last word on New York Fashion Week? That goes to Ms Assoulin and her picture-postcard phrases spelled out in crystal on the back of crisp whites: “THANK YOU” and “Wish You Were Here”.
PHOTOGRAPHY RUNWAY: DAN LECCA
PHOTOGRAPHY BACKSTAGE: ELI SCHMIDT