We all know that fashion is an obvious expression of the artistic and cultural sentiments of the generation and of its time period. However, fashion additionally expresses rampant inequity in representation, cultural appropriation, and body image issues. It’s easy to feel like we have progressed more than the concept of “high fashion” has.
Amidst all of these concerns, the designers of New York Fashion Week gave us a glimmer of hope through their fabulously progressive looks. The designers handled political and social concerns with poignancy and all the glamour you would expect of a fashion show.
Prabal Gurung– Immigration
Immigration is a hot button issue in political discourse. Prabal Gurung brought the issue to the forefront of NYFW featuring models of various ethnicities all wearing Miss-America-Esque sashes that read, “Who gets to be American?”
Christopher John Rogers– Femininity
Rogers’ show addressed concepts of beauty standards for women by showing models in high fashion clothing and stilettos with unshaven legs – Proving you don’t have to be hairless from chin to toe to be feminine and gorgeous!
View this post on Instagram
I’ve been processing this moment for the past 24 hours and trying to think of the appropriate words to express my feelings about this moment. Thank you to my team for your consistent selflessness, hard work, dedication and for continuing to encourage me when I felt that this was an impossibility or that we were doing the most (which we were). Thank you to Christina, David, Alex, Jóse, Mina, Angel, Ashley, Gregory, Shea, Sam, Hana, Morgan, Emma, Lauren and Michael for making this collection happen and for imbuing love and passion into every cut, stitch, and crystal placement. Thank you to Ricky, Marcelo, and Naeemah for helping to realize my vision of a diverse, eclectic group of sexy alien beauties to bring life to these clothes, and to my gorgeous models for adding their unique personalities to the runway. The tears and cheers on the runway and backstage are hopefully evidence that we’re moving in the right direction. Christopher John Rogers, Spring Summer 2020, September 7th, 1PM. Styling: @jrivera218 Casting: @rickymichiels MUA: @marcelogutierrez Hair: @naeemahlafond for @amika Set Design: @wentrcek_zebulon Direction: @christinachanel Production / Show PR: @thehintongroup Shoes: @manoloblahnikhq Jewelry: @morganfhill Gloves: @jazzmint.dash Sound Design: @skypewilliams Sponsored generously by: @swarovski and @nyfw
Tommy Hilfiger– Age before beauty?
The Hilfiger show featured not only models of color, but models visibly over 25 with all the gray hair and wrinkles that come with it. With all of the emphasis on anti-aging in the beauty market, it’s refreshing to see designers and brands embracing the changes that come with aging.
Lots of designers embraced the concept of gender ambiguity in this years shows. In most cases, it featured male models in stereotypically feminine attire or vice versa. Chromat and Ralph Lauren make the list for rejecting the gender binary entirely with ambiguous styling, models, and looks.
View this post on Instagram
The #Chromat10 finale featuring @riconasty, led by @veronicapomee! SS20 celebrated #Chromat’s 10th anniversary by looking at the past, present and future of the community we’ve built together. Creative Director: @BeccaMcCharenTran Producer: @000min2 Front of House Production: @johnnybanger + Jessica Allen Public Relations: @intlplayground Production Management: Jenna Wittman, LDJ Productions
Soundtrack: @b_e_a_r_c_a_t Performance: @riconasty Casting Director: @gilleonsmith Stylist: @meccajw Hair: @JustineMarjan for @Tresemme with @ghd_northamerica Makeup: @fatimasees and the @maccosmetics PRO Team
Manicurist: @eda.midori & Anna Levenson of @LadyFancyNails with @CNDworld Jewelry: @anna.kikue LEDS: @Nitemind
Latex: @tableaux_vivants Inflatables: @Klymit
Shoes: @Reebok, @drmartensofficial, @melissashoesusa
Chromat Team: @BenRitter, @_skiptomylu @shalynwebber @victoria_camila20 @paytonhowell @yosxo_ @bedfullofdirt @jordanbogigian @simplychyna__ @yonina_isman Models: Denise Bidot + Jocelyn at CAA, Shan Fernandez at Crawford Models, Ariel Pierre-Louis at Dorothy Combs, Daniella Valdez at Elite, Ji Young + Ha Young at Fenton Models, Emme at Iconic Focus, Samirah at IMG, Jazzmine, Chol Balding at IPM, Sonny Turner, Victoria Gomez at JAG, Khrystyana at One.1, Hunter McGrady at One Management, Carmen Carrera at Producer Entertainment, Dakota + Meadow at Q Management, Diandra Forrest + Rocky at Skorpion, Tess Holliday at Slash PR, Camille, Kirstie Patrice, Chen Yu at State, Veronica Pomee at State LA, Jovana Albino, Mia Michaels at State Curve, Priscilla Huggins, T-Age, Olivia Burgess, Samantha at Wilhelmina, Mia Kang, Katya at Women 360, Geena Rocero, Lina Bradford, Eddie JareJones, Maya Margarita, Devin Norelle, Kimberly Drew, Ericka Hart, Jari Jones, Stacy Ann, Oyinda, L'Ka, Viktoria Modesta, Helen Pena, Leyna Bloom, Bianca Jasmine, Dakota West, Shannon Clermont.
Laquan Smith– “Flattering”
While many designers have embraced size inclusivity, many do so in the form of concepts designed to “flatter” a larger figure — a word that typically means making models look slimmer. Smith’s designs this season embrace models celebrating their fuller figures and showing off their curves rather than hiding them or trying to slim them.
Carolina Herrera– A new concept of Eveningwear
Streetwear and younger designs have embraced the ink-craze with tattoo clad models left and right but Carolina Herrera’s show featured a model in a gorgeous floral gown with accompanying collar-bone ink.
Christian Siriano– Cover up of flaunt it
Siriano’s model strutted the runway with a high boat neck and a light blue tulle skirt with a plunging slit and visible black panty. His risky look questions what it means to be “modest”.