NEW YORK FASHION WEEK
By Yilin Hsu
Autumn has arrived, but in September the fashion world looks forward to Spring and provides a look into what will be in stores (and in our closets) in the months ahead. New York Fashion Week (NYFW) ushered in many trends – literally highlighted by a neon soaked, tie-dyed infusion of color. And while the year’s festivities may have lacked the drama or flair of previous years, a group of Asian designers stood tall and brought sensibilities that mirror where we are and where we’re going as a society.
In today’s social media obsessed…”share this”…”here’s what I’m eating”…”look where I am”… world, experiences, not possessions, have become the new status symbol. It’s about what you’re doing not about what you have. In a similar way the fashion sensibilities have started to evolve. More wearable, active looks are in vogue and NYFW seemed to signal it’s less about what you’re wearing but how you look (and feel) wearing it.
I was impressed with many collections this year…and while I can do without the bucket hat trend shared in many shows…the styles, shapes and textures on display are something to get excited for…most assuredly with these four talented designers…
The latest collection from Wang Tao and her design house Taoray Wang was a tour de force on the art of balance and the power of juxtaposition. Her clothes mixed a soft light pink and blue palette with classic structured tailoring…bringing an ultra-feminine look to the runway while playing with traditional masculine shapes and bringing a sense of whimsy and play into her looks. Wang Tao has been steadily gaining fans and evolving her vision but it’s her growing confidence that was on display, with this show demonstrating power in one of the most challenging things for a designer to conquer…restraint.
This was a special and truly inspiring show from Zang Toi…perhaps due to the fact that it was his most personal in years. This show was Zang’s fan letter to his favorite designer, the late Yves Saint Laurent. To help build his vision, he traveled to Marrakech, Morocco to visit the Saint Laurent museum and inspire him to create a show that was a fitting tribute to a legend. His show honored it’s theme with use of region appropriate headdresses, draping and fused looks with classic YSL color blocking and an abundant use of silk. Zang Toi is evolving to become a new master and one who will leave a mark on history.
Bosideng’s star studded show was a reflection of the growing empire the line is building, and this year’s collection delivered casual elegance. Making bold gestures of magenta, yellow and silver against a mostly monochromatic palette, Bosideng communicated the collision of modern and traditional …cold and warm…style and comfort. Down luxury was oozing through designs full of lush velvet and beautiful rose patterned tops. Finer ski chalets across the world will be populated by many of the Bosideng pieces on display, and with good reason.
Proudly paying homage to her Chinese heritage, Ruby Fang’s NYFW show was an indulgent and beautiful spectacle of grace and style. While many of the collections on display at NYFW favored clean lines, and softer looks, Ruby Fang’s show made a bold statement with impeccably tailored evening gowns adorned with her amazing beadwork. She blended traditional Chinese garment structure with Renaissance like romance to amazing effect. One of the best of the week for sure.
NYFW week was testimony to some of the amazing Asian talents leading fashion forward. I’m looking forward to many of the new trends…expect to see lots of yellow…but I’m most proud of the continued evolution from some of our best.
It’s an exciting time for Asian fashion…from trendsetting on the streets to pace-setting on the runways.