Tuesday, 24 September 2013

New York Fashion Week SS14 – runway highlights

I have to admit, despite being a sun-worshiper who would ideally like 11 months of summer and only one of winter, it is always the autumn/winter fashion shows that get my heart racing. It is very rare that a spring/summer show seduces me in its entirety, probably due to designers' propensity to celebrate the season with pastels, florals and acres of pristine white.

This was indeed the case with the recent New York Fashion Week shows, where there weren't any shows I fell for completely, but there were plenty of standout designers and looks that I'm lusting after. So as we head into winter – I can barely see out my window thanks to the curtain of grey drizzle – let's look ahead to next spring and see what some of New York's finest have to offer.

Betsey Johnson SS14
Oh how I love Betsey Johnson! There weren't any surprises here, it was a collection of her typical 80s silhouettes and ghetto-fabulous accessories. It's all probably a step too far for the more understated New York fashionista, and it certainly doesn't cover any new fashion ground, but seriously – peach hair, fabulous accessories and a liberal scattering of leopard print? I'm starting to think Betsey Johnson collections are designed purely to make me smile!

Christian Siriano SS14

Ok, I know I implied I have an aversion to florals and pastels, but sometimes they are right on the money. At Christian Siriano it was the formal looking collar and those bright lips and matching sandals that prevented the look from becoming too cute – this is the kind of spring fashion I can get on board with. Plus it was shown as part of a collection that included graphic monochrome (want that striped skirt now please), so there was no danger of falling into that overtly-girly-spring-pastels trap!

Hervé Léger by Maz Azria

Since 2007, the Hervé Léger label has been steered under the design direction of Max Azria, a man with the tricky juggling act of staying true to the Hervé Léger aesthetic whilst moving the brand forwards. This season he mixed things up a little, still showing the infamous body-con dresses that we know and love, but adding a variety of zips that allow the wearer to alter the garment's silhouette ever so slightly. The resultant collection didn't abandon the classic bandage dress, but the slight deviations in shape and fabric – such as the flared skirts and crochet dresses – were a welcome addition.

Alexander Wang

The current trend for logos and ironic statements is perhaps due to the fact that a generation of designers – Alexander Wang included – were teens in the nineties and are having a moment of nostalgia. There's no denying that the parental advisory sweater was one of the most memorable pieces in his SS14 collection; I think perhaps he enjoys indulging in a bit of humour when he's not busy in his other role, heading up Balenciaga. Another standout look was the cheekily unbuttoned button-down shirts and those rather comfy looking boxers – not entirely sure how to interpret that one for the office yet but I'm sure there's a way!

Kate Spade New York

I'm the first to admit that my wardrobe can be a little devoid of colour but there are two shades I can always be tempted by – the first is emerald green and the second is the rather in-your-face coral seen at the Kate Spade New York presentation. As usual there was a distinctly 1960s vibe to many of the looks, and a European influence referenced glamorous destinations from Paris to Monaco. Well chosen accessories toned down the more overtly feminine looks: a black leather box bag proving the perfect foil for a coral prom dress, and trainers and a collared shirt successfully taming the florals. It is a very accessible collection that screams summer fun – an image I will be keeping in mind to get me through another grey British winter.

Well that's all for now but I will be posting my London and Milan Fashion Week highlights soon!

All images © Style.com

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