Jordan Dechambre-Childers, managing and fashion editor of M: Milwaukee's Lifestyle Magazine, and Bjorn Nasett, magazine stylist and hair stylist at Beauty, are on the scene at NYC Spring '09 Fashion Week Sept. 5-12. Watch for daily updates on the hottest trends as they hit the runway.
Designer Reem Acra showed her eclectic side on Thursday afternoon with a collection mixing textures both soft and rough. Floaty caftans and kimonos mingled with tailored dupioni silk coats over crisply pleated skirts. The fabrications were whimsical, with embroidery, raffia and bright jewels competing for attention. The unifier here was that each look was anchored with a braided leather belt of brown with tangerine detail. Colors were all over the place from sunburst yellow to hot pink, playing off of neutral tan and olive. The only sore thumb was a black and white vertical-striped, man-tailored suit, which did not seem to fit in the overall collection.
Next up was the ready-to-wear collection from Anthropologie designer Leifsdottir. Her inspiration was evident upon entering the showroom: starfish, shells and pearls decorated everything from candlesticks to fountains. Her models floated through the environment in her charming designs holding conch shells to their ears and blowing bubbles with seahorse wands. Rosettes, pleats, soft prints and pastels in shades of ecru, persimmon and teal were dominant. Separates and little dresses were the norm and the details exquisite. We're sure you'll see these in Third Ward store in early spring, along with her first shoe collection.
Bjorn taxied to Soho for The Gilded Age men's ready-to-wear collection. Inspired by downtown-dwelling artists like Grant Wood and Edward Hopper, the collection was presented as a living montage of models posed on vintage crates, and celebrated the ordinary in a unique way. The approach for the spring 2009 line is that ordinary doesn't have to mean stagnant. The casual separates included distressed dark wash denims, trench coats and blazers mixed with vibrantly colored sweaters and button-down shirts. Trend alert! Almost all of the jeans were cuffed or rolled. In attendance was Kevin Christiana of "Project Runway" fame.
Friday began with a viewing of Sabyasachi Mukherjee's eponymous spring collection. With a definite nod to the '80s, blouson and bomber jackets were layered over intricately done separates. With a rich tertiary color scheme of golds, burgundy and dusty teal, it definitely stood out from many of the other shows we had seen. Vertical patchwork was used in A-line skirts, and many of the dresses had a scalloped, "fish scale" treatment that added to the overall texture. Hand-printed textiles, embellished with embroidery, and buttons showcased the talents of this designer. Some of the most interesting pieces had a sheer inset hemline of lace and organza, a definite trend for spring.
Carmen Marc Valvo's view of spring was titled "Plain Geometry." His inspiration? The humble square. Metallic organza dresses embellished with tiles of leather delighted his fashion fans in the main tent. Satin ribbons created a basket-woven look on swimwear and dresses. It all came across as fresh and quite innovative. The color scheme was somber, with colors like tan, ecru, black, dusty sage green and dry mustard.
The last show of the week was Omnialuo's "Beauty Blossoms" collection. Drawn from the supreme craftsmanship and materials from a China of yesteryear, the collection included imperial decoration and style. The draping and folding of the fabric in the gowns and dresses was key to transforming the simple silhouettes. Large metallic pewter bibs were the only accessories shown. The tent burst into applause when a gown featuring armor-like details mixed with ostrich feathers fluttered down the catwalk. Other gowns looked as if they were roses that had just been plucked from a lovely garden. Petals fell from above as the models took their final walk, and created a feeling of lush beauty, indeed. Watch for petal-like details and floral accents as a huge spring 2009 trend.