Living forms at Proenza Schouler and a Christian Cowan parade atop the World Trade Center kicked off New York Fashion Week Fall-Winter 2022 Friday, with the calendar still thronged by absentees and the Covid.
The Proenza Schouler brand, which after a few years has become a New York classic, started in an art gallery in Manhattan’s East Village, The Brant Foundation.
Like the chosen space for the parade, intimate but under an immense ceiling height, creators Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez played mostly on the shapes, while the seats were filled with music played a little unsettlingly by a violin quintet.
Fitted, even compressed waists, on loose skirts or with slightly rounded effects, the shapes were contrasting, sometimes exaggerated, an attempt to respond “to this obsession with the body nowadays. With social networks everyone wants to show their body,” says Lazaro Hernandez. Buttoned sleeves, drawn shoulders, black velvet hooded top that gives famous model Bella Hadid a bit of “Catwoman”, “play and experiment are the watchwords, perhaps more today than ever,” claims Proenza.
– In height –
In doing so, Christian Cowan, who has already dressed Lady Gaga, Cardi B or Lil Nas X, took to the skies and presented his collection at the One World Trade Center observatory.
From the 102nd floor of the skyscraper, painted pink on the brand’s social media accounts, the show in a nightclub atmosphere confirmed the British designer’s taste for glamor and glitz.
Despite the restrictions due to the pandemic and an Omicron variant that disrupted the preparation of the event, several brands and their creators have decided to hold a physical parade, such as Michael Kors, Altuzarra, Tory Burch, Brandon Maxwell or Telfar , according to the official calendar.
But Tom Ford, who is himself president of the American Fashion Union (CFDA) and was due to close the edition next Wednesday, had to retire at the end of January due to an increase in Covid cases in his teams.
“We’ve done everything we can to avoid canceling our New York show, but unfortunately we’re faced with the fact that we simply don’t have a full collection in time,” he said.
– Absent –
Thom Browne, for his part, is well on the calendar, but on April 29. He explained that he wanted to get closer to the opening of the second act of the major retrospective on American fashion at the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (Met). An institution whose curator, Andrew Bolton, is his companion.
For several years now, New York has also been dealing with absentees, choosing to parade elsewhere or turn away from the classical calendar and criticize the frenetic pace of fashion. Also for this edition no Christopher John Rogers, voted “women” designer of the year 2021 by the CFDA, nor Pyer Moss, the brand founded by Kerby Jean-Raymond.
Again, therefore, the opportunity is offered to emerging or barely emerging brands to make their debut, usually for presentations and not too expensive parades. This will be the case, for example, for Melke or Dauphinette, who promote sustainable and ethical fashion.
Emma Gage, 26, who founded Melke during the pandemic, isn’t picky. For her, who is on the Fashion Week calendar, “it really tells you like someone who will be there for a long time”. “It’s very satisfying to realize that people are going to see my work and think it deserves to stand next to brands that have had a lot of success,” she explained to AFP in her small studio in Bushwick, a borough of Brooklyn. .