New York Fashion Week is in full swing and the SS20 collections are hitting the runways. As usual, the best looks are split between the catwalk and the sidewalk. The Big Four fashion shows are beginning with a bang in the Big Apple.
It has been a European summer full of style, with Copenhagen and Oslo fashion weeks inspiring devotees across the globe. New York Fashion Week, running from 6 – 12 September, kicks off the first of the Big Four – New York, London, Paris and Milan.
Tommy Hilfiger, Ralph Lauren, Brandon Maxwell, Kith x Ksubi, Prabal Gurung, Zimmermann and many more giants in the fashion world have released their spring/summer collections for 2020, which featured unique colour combinations and distinctive silhouettes making a comeback.
This season’s schedule has been revamped by new chairman of the Council of Fashion Designers of America, and fashion mainstay, Tom Ford. Designer Vera Wang marks 30 years in the business this season, along with Chromat and Prabal Gurung each celebrating a decade on the fashion scene.
The Best Of The Best
The spring collections were suitably refreshing and reminiscent of cool cocktails. Swishy shoulder-padded power suits are back. The classic white suit was revisited by Tory Butch and given a decidedly forties twist. Designers Mara Hoffman and Adeam also flirted with the bright white co-ord.
Pastel lime shades featured on the catwalks of Jonathan Simkhai, Rosetta Getty and Tibi, to name a few. The cool citrus shade was showcased in flowing fabrics, cascading to the floor in cottons and silks. More structured styles got a look in as well. The peplum silhouette made a brief return in the collections of Ulla Johnsons, Christopher John Rogers and Khaite.
KITH had a notable collaboration with Australian brand Ksubi for this season’s NYFW, showcasing a dream collab between elevated athleisure and punk-inspired denim streetwear. Ksubi is entering the canon of renowned streetwear brands showcased at Ronnie Fieg’s Manhattan and Brooklyn stores. The collab proved fresh, with a straight-leg jean, boyfriend-cut with Ksubi staple slashes on the knee and matching denim jacket for womenwear. For menswear, Kith x Ksubi denim jackets abounded.
Another Australian label, Zimmermann, also shone on the New York runway. Sister-duo designers Nicky and Simone Zimmermann spoke to the Sydney Morning Herald, saying that the collection, “Wavelength” was inspired by a memory from their school days in Sydney’s south:
“I love to show connection to a memory or something I can identify with … from where we’re from. This collection is about being at school in December, you’ve done your exams, and the teachers [say], ‘You can watch a movie’.”
Check out some of the best designs below:
Diversity on the Runway
Tommy Hilfiger has teamed up with Zendaya for the second season in a row. The looks this time around served as a celebration of diversity, taking inspiration from the uptown NY women of the 1970s. Designs included velvet suits with tie-neck blouses, lurex jumpsuits, and snakeskin print dresses and trousers.
Thom Browne brought some gender fluidity and theatricality to the event, with a performance art promotion called “The Officepeople”, in which performers of all genders filed down the New York sidewalk in identical grey suit jackets and pleated skirts. The faux office workers carried their Thom Browne suitcases to the fountain and ate identical sandwiches.
Prabal Gurung’s ten-year anniversary show traced through American fashion history, showing off forays into sportswear, denim, athleisure, tie dye and formal ballgowns. Gurung notably changed venues after news that the show’s previous venue chairman was hosting a fundraiser for Donald Trump. The finale walk of the show had models wearing sashes asking “Who Gets to Be an American?”
The show notes stated,
“To me, this country has always been a beacon of hope where one’s wildest ambitions can come true; a melting pot that is colorful, multicultural, and beautiful…I am an American…I continue to seek the America I came here to be a part of—the America that I know is still there. With the Spring 2020 Collection, we seek to celebrate hope, courage, and present an ode to the true American Dream.”
Fashion Night Life
Brandon Maxwell’s Saturday night show had a party vibe, with clean 1970s preppy fits infused with a sultry side. Ballgowns and jumpsuits were given a country club reimagining. The brand now has a menswear line as well, with the debut showing a smart casual look to match the ladies.
Ralph Lauren’s show has definitely been a highlight so far, with an immersive experience for guests. Ralph’s Club in lower Manhattan was revamped into a jazz-era nightclub for the event, with the designer flaunting new takes on formal gowns and tuxedos. The collection centred around classic style and glamour.
Pop sensation Janelle Monáe performed on the night, climbing onto tables and pouring champagne onto ecstatic onlookers. The artist wore her signature gender-bending look: a tuxedo dress from Ralph Lauren’s new Collection. Sister models Gigi and Bella Hadid were both on the runway in Ralph Lauren designs, each with a decidedly vintage flair.
Cool weather in New York hasn’t stopped the cotton dress and silk pyjamas from making big appearances in streetwear. Structured trench coats and over-sized chain jewellery add to the staples.
Streetwear has featured bold and bright colour choices throughout, often offset by earthy nutmeg and warm rust tones. It’s clear that an outsized, roomy silhouette is the look of the moment. Forties-inspired zoot suit jackets and trousers are a must-have for womenswear.
The bold statement co-ord is back! The short suit has been a big feature, with a matching blazer and shorts ensemble a sure-fire hit in the streets surrounding the event. Tartan, pinstripes and bright colours dominated.
Blurring the boundaries between the decades proved popular as well. Many of the street outfits had a decidedly ’90s panache, with leopard print and slogan tees mixed with nu-metal chains and chunky-soled platforms. Doc Martens under flowing maxi skirts were a hit with the Gen Z crowd. In contrast, many older attendees favoured the softer florals and tans of 1970s-inspired designs, as well as 1950s full skirts and heels.
As the fashionistas transition to London, we’re excited to see if the trends continue!
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