“On behalf of Fashion Group International, I am delighted to announce FGI COMMUNIQUÉ will return for this upcoming season! Since 1936, FGI has been an essential resource for industry information at the zeitgeist of innovation.” — Maryanne Grisz, President & CEO, Fashion Group International


Khakis, chinos and olive drab move beyond expected casual basics with thoughtful cuts, easy proportions and intentional details. Greg Lauren has long used authentic military wear for his experimental designs, partly because of the high quality workmanship of these meant-to-last pieces. Proenza Shouler softened a khaki tailored pantsuit by layering it with a seamless knitted tube that functioned as a torso-defining corselet. Derek Lam cited actress Charlotte Rampling as a muse this season; his tonal-pieced trench coat and sleek zip-pocketed miniskirt capture the kind of effortless chic Ramping symbolizes, part casual and part polished.


Plant-based dyes are part of the industry’s ongoing search for more sustainable production methods, which has also spurred renewed interest in natural indigo processes. Amiri used a light, even wash on easy denim pieces like a boxy chore jacket, wide leg cargo, and sweeping duster coat. Greg Lauren achieved a mottled effect for his indigo-dyed patchwork cable-knit and bleached jeans. Derek Lam went in a more tailored direction, bringing 1970s-era elegance to a trim pantsuit and pieced denim shirtdress.


Sweaters display all sorts of tactile stitchery for next fall. Amiri used a giant-needle gauge and a mix of mohair and textural yarns for a rustic yet lacy pullover. Maria Cornejo’s sweater uses a shaggy yarn “fur”, bringing playful dimension to a crafty cardigan. More fringed yarn effects come from fat tassels ornamenting a popcorn-stitched fisherman knit from Zimmermann, and a fringe-finished pullover at Lafayette 148. Nellie Partow has long worked to elevate the craft of knitting to artform; this season she collaborated with local knitters to create a sleek yet artisanal crochet sweater, complete with matching scarf.


Bustiers and corsets lose their boudoir preciousness and become integrated with wearable daytime basics for next fall. Ashlyn Park, true to her Yohji Yamamoto-trained roots, deconstructed a pinstriped suit to create a clever tailored bustier over matching pleated mini. Tanya Taylor’s “art girl” expresses a romantic mood with a softly tied corselet-jacket over a crisp white shirt. Proenza Schouler integrates a minimalist corset into a balloon-skirted dress, and Herve Leger remained true to the house’s body-conscious heritage with a knitted pink set that included a cozy sweater-knit corset.


The release from lockdown has spurred a pent-up desire for sparkle and shine, and New York designers offered plenty of items to satisfy that urge for next fall. Christian Cowan showed his glitzy dresses at One World Observatory, against a view of the glimmering New York skyline. We especially loved the giant silvery paillette that trimmed a minidress. Cowan was inspired by vintage glamor this season, as was Malan Breton with his Deco-beaded shift. Monique Lhuillier also cited historic references, specifically the Gatsby era. But while Lhuillier’s festive dresses may borrow from the past, their easygoing shapes and brilliantly shimmering surfaces were purely modern.