From alternative show venues to ‘alternative’ models and from political statements to inclusive diversity, NYFW wasn’t just about the fashion this season… The Style Edit presents the best bits of New York Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2020.
Diversity And Inclusivity Meets Fashion
New York was the trailblazer for diversity in fashion across the cities, as the runways hosted models of all body types, shapes, sizes and ages.
The spring/summer season saw Kate Spade cast 65 year old ‘Accidental Icon’ blogger Lyn Slater. While 9 year old double-amputee Daisy-May Demetre made fashion history by walking the runway for junior couture label Lulu et Gigi.
Swim, sport and body-wear label Chromat, continued its efforts in inclusivity with a broad range of model aesthetics showcasing their range, including plus-size model Tess Holliday, who appeared wearing a white dress emblazoned with words that read ‘Sample Size’.
Fresh Venues, Fresh Formats
The spring/summer collections saw many fashion houses take a step away from the traditional show formats and typical venues.
Ralph Lauren presented a Great Gatsby-esque fashion extravaganza at an exquisite Art Deco-inspired nightclub. Embracing true jazz age glamour, American singer and songwriter Janelle Monáe took to the stage wearing a tuxedo-inspired halter gown from the collection for a dazzling performance.
Meanwhile, Tom Ford invited his audience to a decommissioned subway station, transforming the retired platform into a runway complete with subway workers serving drinks.
Tommy Hilfiger’s see-now, buy-now #TommyNow collection collaboration with actress Zendaya launched at New York’s iconic Apollo Theater. The show was a true celebration, embodying the mood of a 70s block party marked with live singers and dance performances.
“Who Gets To Be American?”
In blatant political reference to Trump’s immigration agenda Nepalese-American designer Prabal Gurung sent his diverse selection of models down the runway adorning sashes that read: “Who Gets To Be American?”. In Gurung’s memorable show notes he affirmed: “Amidst the deep wounds that are severing the unity of our country, I continue to seek the America I came here to be a part of – the America that I know is still there. And so, with the Spring/Summer 2020 collection, we seek to celebrate hope, courage, and present an ode to the true American dream”.
Stand Out Collection: Area
Area designers Beckett Fogg and Piotrek Panszczyk shined a light on the craftsmanship and couture shapes of the past this season. Creating a maze of hanging crystal fringing along the runway, the duo utilised crystal strands as textile yarn in their breathtaking collection. Metal cage dresses, rendered with trellis-like arches glimmering in golden crystals complimented 3D sculptures worn as corsets.
Stand Out Collection: Longchamp
A sea of models drifted along the edge of the giant pond at the Lincoln Center’s Hearst Plaza in Longchamp’s latest offering. Creative director Sophie Delafontaine depicted the colourful artwork of Judy Chicago as she guided the audience through a mish-mash of themes in “a colour explosion in the city”. Boxy leather jackets were paired with knitted two-piece sets; crop tops were teamed with floral appliqué and transparent skirts; each look was finished with a neoprene sock boot. Post-show, she explained that she was aiming for a mash-up of the ’70s and ’90s. It was “a mix between sporty and feminine, with a touch of hippie chic”.
Stand Out Collection: Jeremy Scott
With this collection, Jeremy Scott said, he was out to “have fun” and with that agenda in mind, he constructed what he described as a “neon rock opera”. There were psychedelic Hawaiian print menswear ensembles, zebra-stripe bouffant dresses in electric colours, paint-spattered foil blazers and metallic leather minidresses. The show could be considered pointedly playful and unserious, in a society that is well overdue a little escapism.