A look into New York Fashion Week Fall 2018. Looking past clothes, collections and accessories and what it means to take a stance and make a bolder statement, anyway anyhow.

As New York Fashion Week comes to a close, we open ourselves with a lot to think about from the 8-day show. There were numerous stories and concepts we can imagine and retell, from beginning to the end. Although one could see the imminent hit and misses, not to mention some painful controversies, it’s safe to say the week ended well. Change and new beginnings are painful and may result to uneasiness at times. But we come to conclude that the week would be a hopeful start to more and exciting concepts in the future of New York Fashion Weeks, if not fashion weeks.

This year’s NYFW took a different spin where taking a controversial stance, was much more subtle and seamless. While some shows were mostly about the collection pieces and the techniques, most value statement. There were brands that manifest womanhood, ones that take a vocal stance on politics, while others were vibrant enough to take the ‘80s and 90’s to a literal representation. There were stories within most runways that make these shows truly memorable, meaningful and entertaining.

Tribute to the ‘80s and ‘90s

Referencing old school classics were seen throughout this year’s New York shows. For the most part, we could see fashion regeneration taking place, as brands are not afraid to roll out conventional concept. The “more is more” concept of maximalism really enhances not just this particular concept but most concepts there were in this week’s shows.

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To begin with, Tom Ford recreated looks with animal prints, which dominated the entire collection. Bold shoulders and oversized silhouettes were greatly seen in Marc Jacobs’ great finish for fashion week. The collection took a bold move by getting inspired on the 1980s fashion haute couture, predominantly paying homage to the anachronisms of their days. Other notable features of the collection include the signature baggy trousers of the time, rhinestones and metallic details, complemented with oversized hats.

Wonderfully and Timelessly Elegant

There’s something wonderful about being truly elegant and regale. And this fashion week, we get to see more elegant and cascading pieces on the runway floors where most paid attention to flourishing embellishments as well as interlaying fabrics. Some notable collections that took this route include Prabal Gurung’s boldly patterned knits and Christian Siriano’s ever regale themed 100th anniversary collection. Robe-like floor-length faux fur coats dominated Siriano’s collection. Newcomer Marina Moscone presented a rather classy collection, which included oversized hand-knit cashmere sweaters with extra long sleeves and elegant strapless coupe gowns – ones we wish we could wear.

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Carolina Herrera entranced us all with her final collection under the house she belted for more than 30 years. Successor Wes Gordon will take on the role as creative lead of the label continuing on the legacy with his very own creative vision. This Fall 2018 was a great feminine tribute to the signature Herrera we know, cascading long skirts with crisp white top, adorned with chunky belts. It was chic, it was feminine but it captured Herrera’s signature look for the last time in a chic, classy, and graceful characters that we come to know. Other collections we have come to love were Brock Collection, among many. The hints of dusty pink fabrics with floral patterns and ruffles were a match to some romantic elegance.

All Those Issues: Feminism, Social and Political

Although this year’s political references and activist approach were much more subdued than any other years, we see womanhood and voices of women taking over the runways. Take Prabal Gurung, for example. He was one of the most vocal designers of the season, taking models to the runway with white roses on their hands for the finale, which was a complement to the Time’s Up protests at the Grammys.

A Look Into New York Fashion Week Fall 2018

The white-rose moment at Prabal Gurung Fall 2018 finale. Photography Andres Kudacki/Associated Press via nytimes.com

Again, Tom Ford brought literally “Pussy Power”, highlighting female empowerment on stage. Their tailored suits alongside skin-tight fabrics, leotards and their animal prints are what gave their collection the edge. Although it’s not as good and it’s not as interesting for an entire collection, it serves it purpose and that is, its purpose to join into the #MeToo movement and to empower women through their literal statement not to mention the embroidered literal “Pussy Power” in clutches.

A Look Into New York Fashion Week Fall 2018

“Pussy Power” logo featured in the Tom Ford show. Photography Angela Weiss/AFP. Image courtesy of ph.asiatatler.com

Other runway that had an over the top and completely mind-boggling show was Calvin Klein. The show took place in the American Stock Exchange where runway was covered in a sea of popcorn. The apocalyptic feel to the show aroused most but for us, it was a social commentary through metaphors and imageries of the objects presented. The darkness and somber feel may feel tempting but it was more about hope for the future. Pieces of the collection include firemen’s jacket, Mylar survival blankets turned open-back dresses, HAZMAT boots, hand-knit balaclavas that portray a great amount of dystopian nature.

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The Staple But Dreamy

We could not take our eyes of The Row from their presentation last week. The Olsen twins returned with a dreamy collection – one that had everything we needed to staple pieces. Monochromatic tones dominated the collection with trench coats, roll-neck sweaters, and wide pants, all constructed in such an architecturally and aesthetically pleasing way. Similarly, Victoria Beckham was also under our radar with her collection oversized trench coats with grey and olive green undertones that were sleek to the body, some colors and asymmetry. But it was the shift in her label that interests us; she took a different tailoring vision to fit the criteria of the younger consumers, definitely a new way of approaching collections to cater the younger ones.

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Another worth-mentioning runway show was Sies Marjan making this Sander Lak’s fifth collection for the brand. The clash and play on patterns and gradient colors were the highlight of the entire collection, which was a definite feast for the eyes. A dreamy but utopia-like theme of shades of red and blue hues permeate against the walls of the runway show; think Dan Flavin-esque illuminating neon shades. Staple pieces included the easy and simple silhouettes, ombre loose fitted dresses, fury coats and flowing trousers paired with oversized blouses and shirts. The sheerness and simplicity of the collection make it very meditative, tranquil and very pleasing when worn as is.

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New York Fashion Week is interesting. Not only were there a myriad of concepts and shows to choose from but also to us, it was the concepts that designers sell to capture the attention of many. Just like art, concepts are what make these clothes find their secondary purpose, an important trait that should be carried for the future. As more people become more conscious of their surroundings, they crave for meaning and depth one that relates to them deeply, closing the gap between the viewers, clienteles with the brands and labels. There’s more to watch from the next fashion weeks. But for New York Fashion Week, we were blessed that it got our juices flowing and conversations pouring.