At New York Fashion Week, It’s All About Breaking The Rules

By Patricia Reaney

New York Fashion Week ended with a flourish on Thursday after a parade of innovative shows that gave an affectionate nod to the 1980’s, with designers mixing power suits, chunky furs and metallic fabrics into lavish new looks for both day and night.

During the February rendition of the twice-annual fashion week, embellished fabrics, deconstructed shirts and sparkly tops were prominent on the runway, with a palette that ranged from muted tones to bold colors, including fuchsia and cobalt blue.

“It can never be too shinny or too glittery,” said Avril Graham, executive fashion and beauty editor for Harper’s Bazaar. “It is the major story of this season in New York.”

Designer Marc Jacobs closed the week with his fall 2017 collection of fur-trimmed tweed jackets, mini skirts, shimmery tops and oversized hats at the Park Avenue Armory, where the runway show extended from inside to outside the building.

Models present creations from the Marc Jacobs Fall/Winter 2017 collection during New York Fashion Week in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., February 16, 2017. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

After the show as the audience left, the models, still standing or seated on the closed-off sidewalk, pulled out their cellphones and took photos.

“People are rule-breakers right now,” said Kyle Anderson, market and accessories director at Marie Claire magazine, “whether it is designers or stylists, everybody is trying new things.”

The night before Ralph Lauren presented his second in-season show, keeping the glamour theme for his spring-focus collection of tailored jackets, slim pants, jumpsuits and caftan-like dresses in beige, taupe, ivory and black.

Lauren, who designed Melania Trump’s sky blue jacket and dress for Inauguration Day, ramped up the look for the evening with plunging necklines and slinky gowns in emerald green, purple and gold.

The February shows, traditionally for fall/winter collections, also featured spring looks that will be immediately available in stores, instead of months later.

“Fashion Week is going through a lot of different transitions right now. It is being disrupted like every other industry and political system throughout the world,” said Roseanne Morrison of the fashion and retail consultancy The Doneger Group.

“People are trying to find the right balance in what they present and how they present it,” the fashion director added.

For Lauren, that meant converting his elegant flagship store on Manhattan’s Upper East into a multi-level runway with walls covered in white orchids. On Thursday it was open to the public so they could shop right off the runway.

In one of the most anticipated shows, Belgian designer Raf Simons showed off his first collection as chief creative officer at Calvin Klein with a combined men’s and women’s show featuring tailored suits, western-style shirts and plastic-covered coats.

Another hot ticket was the first collection of Laura Kim and Fernando Garcia as creative directors for Oscar de la Renta. In another first, the duo held combined, back-to-back shows for de la Renta and Monse, the hit label they launched in 2015. — REUTERS