NYFW is officially upon us and a slew of fresh collections full of inspiration and innovation is just what the doctor ordered. It’s summer in the city – at least its end – and the energy is like no other in the fashion world. With the holiday season approaching and a season filled with unrestrained energy and creativity, this is the kind of atmosphere that brings new ideas to life.
The week kicked off on September 9th with shows like Proenza Schouler, Fendi’s 25th Anniversary Baguette Show, Dion Lee and Eckhaus Latta and things have only gotten better. Below are our NYFW highlights so far.
Fendi’s 25th Anniversary Baguette Show
25 years ago, Silvia Venturini Fendi designed one of the most iconic bags in history: the baguette. Joined forces with Silvia Venturini Fendi and Kim Jones for FENDI, Marc Jacobs, Tiffany & Co, Sarah Jessica Parker and Porter, the brand’s 25th anniversary tribute show to the iconic bag, popularized by SJP in an episode of Sex and the City as Carrie proclaims, “It’s not a bag, it’s a Baguette!” while he’s being robbed.
The show championed Fendi’s baguette design, seen underneath parkas, gloves, hats, skirts and sweaters. Fabrics emblematic of the late ’90s and early ’90s, such as satin, shiny leather and sequined fabrics, have been layered to evoke the bag design era. Marc Jacobs was involved in creating 10 of the 54 looks, which, similar to his Fall ’22 collection, feature exaggerated silhouettes such as parachute skirts, opera capes and recycled fur hats.
For the Tiffany & Co. entry, the baguette is reimagined in silver, enamel, white gold and diamonds, with one baguette being handcrafted entirely in sterling silver over a four-month period. Finally, Japanese brand Porter’s version of the baguette was a unified and masculine display of utility and function.
Everyone came together in homage to New York, the city where the show took place and the city where the baguette became popular. The best part? It perfectly captured the fun, essence of the baguette.
Being one of the bigger opening shows of the week is always a tall order, and Proenza Schouler designers Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez are infinitely good at setting the mood. And for SS23 this was no exception. It was a celebration of the spirit. One that captured joy, energy and the feeling of a summer well spent. In contrast to Fall ’22, which was all about protection, binding and coverage, Proenza Schouler’s SS23 collection freed the body, made it move like water and welcomed the return of house signatures like midriff, crochet, fringes and lace.
To open, Arca opened the show in a loose black tank, with the hem pulled over one shoulder and revealing an ivory trim that shimmered down the torso. Crochet was in full effect, offered in intricate dresses and two-pieces with added fringed hems. There were roomy bell-bottoms and button-down shirts that matched oversized ruffled cuffs, a nod to Hernandez’s Latin roots. Lined shoes walked the runway accompanied by delicate lace dresses.
If anyone needed to set the backdrop for what’s in store this fashion month, McCollough and Hernandez have done it expertly.
Dion Lee knows he has a good thing going, and he knows spring summer is his time to shine. All structure, all sex, all Dion. Most notably, the show reflected his current fixations: monstera leaves and motorcycle gear, and for SS23 the two came together, perhaps more harmoniously than ever.
All eyes have been on Dion since collaborating with Rosalia on her current tour, and Lee built on his signature concepts, utilizing the huggable undershirts and leather harness with a Moto Mami lens. It was all denim mini skirts, leather and windbreaker motorcycle jackets paired with seductive mini dresses and crystal fringes. There were open-toe boots in lime and black that featured laser-cut leather in the shape of monstera leaves that wrapped around the shins, with matching dresses that did the same around the torso. Signature corsets returned with the same, modernized motifs. A favorite was one offered in black lace with chopsticks in the shape of leaves, paired with delicate lace opera gloves to match.
In contrast to Case 22, which felt very dystopian and doomsday-like, SS23 broke — excuse the pun — a new leaf, one that continued Lee’s constant conversation between the urban and natural setting.
Corner house Latta
There’s something about a spring-summer show at Eckhaus Latta that’s just right for you. It makes us want to work up a sweat with our friends around town and dance until the sun comes up. This season, designers Mike Eckhaus and Zoe Latta have bottled that feeling.
Taking place in a lush garden in the heart of the city, the models walked the lawn in glittery, sequined tops and slouchy drawstring pants, ribbed knits and lace pieces. On closer inspection, the collection comes to life through its texture, especially because it’s so diverse. There are bouclé two-pieces, chunky lace pants with cascading mini skirts and ruffle detailing, huge bubble-like waistcoats and matching skirts made from a stretchy fabric. Most notable were thick ribbed knits printed with the work of artist Matthew Underwood, a friend of Latta’s who recently passed away. With every exit, there was an invitation to take a closer look, to move a little more resolutely.
Designers are always walking the line between exactly what we want to wear, experimenting with texture and silhouette while somehow skillfully dodging the dreaded ‘graduate project’ label. How do you do that? We may never know, but what we do know is that it works.