What Fashion Week Looks Like Now
Everybody seems to be doing their own thing
I joined the fashion industry at a time when it was reserved for a select few, when hardly any bloggers sat front row, when international collections were still limited to S/S and F/W, with some brands doing Resort and Pre-fall, and when the only distinguished runway show in the Philippines was PhFW.
Flash-forward to today, fashion has somewhat become inclusive. The selection of models are a little more diverse, featuring men and women, young and mature, from different cultures and parts of the world. Fashion journalists, editors, bloggers, vloggers and social media influencers sit side by side, taking selfies and enjoying libations in harmony. Meanwhile, brands churn out collections transcendent of seasons, capsule series and collaborations withal. Manila, on the other hand, has seen the rise of runway shows, big and small, staged by fashion institutions, publications and brands themselves.
It seems fashion has been in a state of flux and will stay that way for a while. Herewith, some of the changes we’ve observed.
Designers Doing Their Own Thing
These days, shows are no longer confined to the runways or in weatherproof venues. Case in point: Rodarte returns from the grave after being absent from NYFW for a few seasons in a show set in a literal cemetery. Models, adorned in fresh blooms and pastel veils, triumphantly walked down the garden despite the torrential rain.
Meanwhile, other designers opted out of NYFW, including Alexander Wang, Rosie Assoulin and Vetements to present their collections in June/December or to follow the couture calendar.
Back in Manila, we’re seeing less of traditional shows and more casual presentations. In such formats, models pose in a tableau wearing a designer’s collection as guests sit, chat and survey the collection. For some designers, like Patty Ang at stylefestph, guests can shop pieces immediately after the presentation.
Fashion People Eat
…And its become less of a secret as brands and designers host luncheons, dinner parties and V-VIP cocktails to showcase their collection. Ahead of this curve are Gucci, Alexander Wang, Jeremy Scott, Kith, Ralph Lauren and CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund finalist Jonathan Cohen. Ralph Lauren is doing a sunset dinner while the rest are throwing cocktail parties, but with Cohen opting for something small and intimate.
Boys, Boys, Boys
Menswear and co-ed shows continue to thrust forward. With Gucci, Calvin Klein and Vetements leading the pack, it took little to no time for other design houses to follow. Expect to see more looks for the boys from Haider Ackermann, Lemaire, Emporio Armani and even The Row whose menswear collection launches in-stores this October.
Big Designer Debuts are Happening at NYFW
What’s even more exciting about NYFW this year is the heritage brands and designers staging their first-ever runway shows. Among the bold-faced names in the lineup are Kate Spade, in which the tribute show also introduced its new designer Nicola Glass, Escada and Longchamp. Also making an appearance for the first time, Savage x Fenty.
In an industry where the tides turn ceaselessly and more so in this decade, there’s really nothing to expect but the unexpected.
Art Alexandra Lara