DAY SIX: WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 2021

“The response to our NYFW debut was so inspiring, we are extending the excitement of FGI COMMUNIQUÉ today and with a special edition this Friday!” — Maryanne Grisz, President/CEO Fashion Group International

LET THE SUN SHINE IN

TOM FORD – GLITTER FOR A NEW ERA

As both brilliant film director and iconic clothing designer, Tom Ford understands how to create visual impact. For Spring he sent casual yet dazzling ensembles down the runway at New York’s Lincoln Center, knocking out attendees with jewel-like color and glittery surfaces. The excess was partially inspired by Diana Vreeland’s quote: “I know it’s a lot but is it enough?” A second group was mostly lustrous black, enlightened by flashes of silver and gold. The track pant bottoms were influenced by his years of living in LA, as much as by lockdown-induced sweats-dressing. Topped with twinkling sweaters, lustrous satin blazers, and sparkling bombers, the radiant collection defined what our new Roaring Twenties era is all about.

ALTUZARRA – REFINED RUSTIC

A former FGI Rising Star winner and FGI Night of Stars honoree, this was Joseph Altuzarra’s first show in New York since 2017 when he decamped to Paris. He went back to roots for this collection in more ways than one. His signature body-skimming silhouettes were there, and he returned to earlier experiments with shibori dye and floral-bundle printing, both collaborations with craft communities. The results were exquisite, with silks and gossamer knits streaked with dye, crochet panels adding more crafty allure, and ankle-wrapped sandals dangling with coins. The coins showed up on necklaces and belts as well, and covetable woven bags completed the urban boho effect. Altuzarra said he wanted to create emotion this season, and with these lovely artisanal creations, he succeeded.

JASON WU – MODERN IMPRESSIONISM

Former FGI Rising Star winner and Night of Stars honoree, Jason Wu is another designer who turned to craft this season; “getting our hands dirty” is how he explained it to Vogue. To this end Wu worked with Cara Marie Piazza, a fabric artist who uses natural dyes to create prints that employ a variety of artisanal techniques. “Flower-bundling”, which other designers experimented with this season, is a method where fresh blossoms leave their imprint on fabric, creating a blurred, impressionist motif. These heavenly prints were fashioned into poufy evening dresses, short cocktail frocks and louche lounge pants that were topped with the season’s must-have stand-alone bra. Wu’s love of flowers is part of his heritage; his father’s garden is a major source of inspiration. This collection, which was shown on models wafting about floral-designer Emma Thompson’s luscious installations, felt like an ode to flowers, craft, memory, and so much more.

VICTOR GLEMAUD – PURE SUNSHINE

The sunlight streaming through the glass-paned ceiling at Manhattan’s newly opened Moynihan Station highlighted the designer’s brightened pastels and bold graphics. The collection was an homage to one of Glemaud’s mentors, designer Patrick Robinson. Slinky knits and lacy crochets had a dance-able ease to them, made even lighter with strategic cutouts or two-piece looks that exposed the midriff. String-tie details and second-skin unitards added to bodywear feel of some pieces, and were shown on both women and men. The entire collection evoked freedom of movement and joy, a perfect amalgam of comfort and style.

GENDER FLUID

He-she style used to refer to women in menswear, usually a three-piece suit or a “boyfriend” blazer and slouchy pants. The tide is turning however, and, at least in downtown Manhattan and parts of Brooklyn, male-presenting guys are seen wearing items like frilly blouses, pleated skirts and chic dresses. New York collections reflect this shift, showing the same kinds of items on male, female and non-binary models. Particularly new this season are the body-con or lingerie-inflected pieces shown on men. Becca McCharen-Tran of Chromat, a trailblazer in non-traditional casting, showed triangle bras and mesh minis on men, and Victor Glemaud put some of his stretchy dresses and bodysuits on guys. Aaron Potts conceived APOTTS as a unisex label and Maryam Nassir Zadeh’s ruffled yet pared-back pieces are meant to appeal to any and all gender expressions.

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