There has been a palpable sense that this year’s AW/18 schedule is going to be a test of New York’s mettle as a fashion capital. An unnerving shadow hung over last season’s shows, a shadow where the Proezna Shouler, Altuzarra, and Thom Browne collections used to be. This season, even more designers are leaving the New York schedule – only two designers are showing who aren’t already based in NYC – and city favourite Alexander Wang will be hosting his last show on the official schedule, before moving to June for SS/18. Fan favourites, Yeezy and Victoria Beckham – two polar opposites in terms of design mentality – are also eschewing traditional presentations in favour of direct-to-consumer showings. Furthermore, Marchesa’s much-anticipated AW/18 collection will be shown digitally. This mass exodus led to the menswear and womenswear shows being fused for an unprecedented 10-day AW/18 fashion week, sparking worries over New York’s future.
However, year on year, New York has proven its resilience and relevance as one of the world’s preeminent fashion hubs. It has continued to surprise and delight showgoers with fresh talent and maverick collaborations, such as last year’s Fenty x Puma extravaganza. Change is afoot in the fashion industry, and the changes aren’t restricted to New York: brands across the globe are rethinking the way they produce, present, and sell clothes. The changes to the NYFW schedule must be understood more as a reflection of these broader changes than as a negative reflection on New York’s fashion industry.
The diversity of the street style that invariably fills New York’s streets when fashion week is on is perhaps more telling than the much-discussed scheduling alterations. The womenswear shows have barely begun, and already show-goers aplenty have been strutting their stuff in fabulous NYC fashion, trotting out the latest trends and serving up classic Big Apple style. We’ve picked out some of our favourite looks so far.
Max Out Your Prints
As a rule, fashion weeks are an excuse to blow the cobwebs off your boldest, most daring, least often worn prints and patterns – and NYFW is no exception. From abstract, arty prints, patchwork checks, to reconstructed photographs: there was lots to love about the colourful maximalism on display on Manhattan’s streets.
Go Hell for Leather
Leather can be found in all its many renditions at NYFW, with showgoers sporting shiny patent looks, but also donning trusty shearling to keep the cold at bay. We love matrix-esque full body leather, as well as must-have leather accessories like berets and ’90s style cross-body bags.
Mimic the Men in Monochrome
The men of New York gave us a masterclass in monochromatic dressing this year. The main lesson: bold is best. So style it out in head-to-toe orange or yellow for a look that is as on trend as it is eye-catching, or try a romantic all-red outfit for Valentine’s day.
Fur, Fluff, fleece, feathers: the streets were filled with the stuff, as showgoers showed us how to stay toasty in style. Contemplate introducing cosier materials in the form of fleecy sleeves and panels to coats in classic fabrics like wool and cashmere.
Beiges and Browns for Outerwear
Camel has been king in the outerwear department for some time now – but brown is a worthy contender for the throne. Rethink how you style your coat, by wearing with a belt or off the shoulders, and experimenting with trendy patterns like pinstripes.