new york

THE MENSWEAR DE­SIGN­ERS OF NEW YORK HAVE SUC­CESS­FULLY EL­E­VATED THEIR OF­FER­INGS BE­YOND THE IN­FLU­ENCE OF STREETWEAR

DA MAN - Style - - Contents - Op­po­site page A sweater spliced with a zip­per from siki im

Be­ing a dark horse, an out­sider or a new­comer al­ways has its ad­van­tages. Just look at how the newly of­fi­cial New York Fash­ion Week: Men’s has been pro­gress­ing so far. Now en­ter­ing its sec­ond of­fi­cial sea­son, the pre­miere fash­ion event for men of the Big Ap­ple has grad­u­ally strayed away from cookie- cut­ter ap­proaches as deis­gn­ers im­bue their de­signs with bolder, more dis­tinc­tive sig­na­tures. The fall/win­ter installment in par­tic­u­lar raised an in­ter­est­ing and prin­ci­pal, ques­tion: How should one start a col­lec­tion?

Some brands gen­er­ally be­gin with an in­spi­ra­tion board; but the de­sign­ers of New York ap­par­ently took a slightly dif­fer­ent road. A few drew on ideas close to their per­sonal ex­pe­ri­ences; another con­cep­tu­al­ized a col­lec­tion based on their con­cern for the devel­op­ment of the menswear in­dus­try. Thus, New York, once iden­ti­cal to streetwear, el­e­vates it­self into a se­ri­ous, head­line-mak­ing fash­ion scene.

Duckie Brown was one of the brands mak­ing those head­lines. In an age where more is more, and fash­ion is pro­jected on screens with end­less streams of images, the brand only re­leased six looks for their fall/win­ter run­way show. Yes, six— not six­teen nor sixty—sim­ple, strong and rather sac­cha­rine getups were on dis­play. Steven Cox and Daniel Sil­ver, the founders and cre­ative di­rec­tors of the brand, ex­plained: “It is real menswear. We’ve done wom­enswear for men for so long, and it’s now hap­pen­ing for men in the main­stream, so it was time to go back.” Known for their fem­i­nine edge on menswear pieces, it was in­ter­est­ing to see ex­ag­ger­ated shoul­ders, crisp shirts and straight­cut trousers pre­sented in a pro­por­tion­ately play­ful man­ner. All in all, the show felt like a wake-up call for the fash­ion in­dus­try;, one that pro­claims how sub­stance mat­ters more than ever.

Another lo­cal leg­end flex­ing his mus­cles in this leg of New York Fash­ion Week was Siki Im. He cited vam­pire movies such as “Drac­ula,” “Nos­fer­atu” and “The Hunger”—“Twi­light” didn’t come up, thank­fully—as the main in­spi­ra­tion be­hind his lat­est col­lec­tion. Pre­dictably, black and red dom­i­nated the pieces, as well as blood and the color of pale skin. Be­yond this lit­eral trans­la­tion of vam­pire lore, the clothes fea­tured many in­trigu­ing touches. One sweater was spliced with a di­ag­o­nal zip­per; red leather patches were strate­gi­cally placed here and there; looser trousers were up­dated through crop­ping or with a tighter stretch around the an­kles. A se­lec­tion of T-shirts from the de­signer’s sec­ond line, Den Im, ended up be­ing the fi­nal show steal­ers, as they lent an air of streetwear for a col­lec­tion that re­ally went above the pull of the street.

In the mean­time, Pa­trik Ervell shone in a space be­tween geeky and edgy. The Amer­i­can de­signer— who stud­ied po­lit­i­cal sci­ence, eco­nom­ics and art his­tory in univer­sity—in­jected a heavy dose of ’ 90s cul­ture and sports­wear trends into his pieces. “Fu­ture vin­tage” was how he dubbed his fall/win­ter col­lec­tion, and, frankly, it couldn’t have been more on point. A range of jack­ets was turned into wardrobe gems with em­bla­zoned patches, awk­ward sil­hou­ettes and shearling neck­lines. Fur­ther­more, the de­signer did not for­get one of the most com­mon fab­rics of the decade: denim. In medium stonewash, denim jack­ets and trousers looked re­fresh­ingly retro this sea­son. All in all, these thought­fully de­signed pieces cer­tainly man­age to cap­ture the afore­men­tioned “fu­ture vin­tage” premise.

Not to be out­done, Pub­lic School, the menswear “dar­ling” of New York, also came up with a strong con­cept this sea­son. De­signer duo Maxwell Os­borne and Dao-Yi Chow staged a pub­lic show that gave fash­ion stu­dents and en­thu­si­asts a first glimpse at the col­lec­tion as the mod­els took a de­tour through the

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