Who Needs Big Brands When You Have Ella Emhoff, Bowen Yang and an Actual Beating Heart?

Surrounded by the rhythms of four days of New York Fashion Week experienced through the computer, it was easy to miss the curly-haired, bespectacled model in a sleek black trouser suit strolling by the Parish Art Museum in Hampton, a 2021 collection video by Prozoa Schouler Because of the fall.

Hold on That yawning. Squint, and squint again. Not just a jacket off the breastbone with a single white button and cleverly structured to suggest, in its line and twisty attitude, a cutaway hiss; Not only in a butter-soft hard leather coat, she wears them in moments later; But on the woman herself. Is this … maybe … yes …

Ella Ehmoff, step-daughter of 21-year-old Vice President Kamala Harris, Knitwear Designer And Newly built modelIt made its first appearance on a show less than a month after President Biden was inaugurated for the first time to the world.

Suddenly the show, which felt increasingly shrinking within the boundaries of the small screen, came back into focus.

Was it a gimmick, to attract attention in a discobulated world? Maybe a little bit. (It worked.) But it also reminds of what Fashion Week is supposed to be about.

And is it? “This new moment in American history,” Lazaro Hernández, co-designer and co-founder of Prozoa Scholler, said via Zoom the day before the video surfaced. “Return of Wisdom and Values. And that was also what we wanted to show with this collection. That …”

“That,” said his partner Jack McColloo, “we are at the beginning of a new era.”

Welcome to New York Fashion Week to transition. Most of the big names, domestic houses that attract foreign editors and retailers to the city, were absent. Even most of the short breakout names were gone, all of them shown on informal dates to reveal that “New York Fashion Week” was changed to just one part.American collection,“A free-floating concept that exists throughout the year.

It would have been easy, even tempting, to dismiss the entire digital practice as a complete allegiance to the old way of doing things. But among those who stopped it and seized the day, which had a glimpse of something: disobedience, optimism, faith in the future. Consequently, a better name for the event may have been suggested by Mr. Hernández: “Frontier Collection”.

People had created a space to separate the space between reality from the working house, and the world.

For example, Projoa Schowler’s terrific bar-razor from a collection that featured tactile details – macrame and crochet inserts, silk fringes, dip-dye hems, parchment slippers – combined in stitched jersey, wool and leather. Connect with. There was also easy layering, so that everything was off-center and unpredictable. What appeared to be layers of slip dresses and wrap skirts was actually the same garment; The jacket can be tilted backward or backward to pull the sides; And the effect was both cocooning and picaboo, like a body protruding from a chrysalis in the open air.

Or see Gabriella Hurst’s equally touching, equally temperamental work, as well as the fine line between the materiality of smuggling and the building of dignity. Filmed in a fiery warehouse in Brooklyn, the collection was inspired by 12th-century Bingon’s nun St. Hildegard and dedicated to the idea of ​​”hope” and “a future free of apathy.”

So the designer said, anyway, during the backstage zoom tour through the fabric of the cream cable, with a black leather corset at the waist with the inset or champagne silk version of the same, cut with black lace splatter, And the trenches are tied with large dots. Shoulders instead of military epaulets. They were not very sword in the plow, but you could get hints. Paired with a specially fluted cashmere skirt and matching sweater with three-dimensional flowers based on a portrait by Ms. Hurst’s 12-year-old daughter. This time, it is personal.

Batsheva Hay, whose work has become increasingly eclectic, combined her trademark postmodern prairie dresses with rocker crushed velvet, even featuring photos of friends and models like Amy Fine Collins with her kitchens and cookies and washing machines . It is not a slum, but everyone is ready and dreaming of going somewhere.

Prabal Gurung captured the mood when he asked his models – men and women dancing around a polka-dot floral explosion of red, pink, black and white, flared pants, flamenco skirts and other sartorial odes. York.

“I always feel like I’m walking into a movie when I’m in New York,” one said. “New York gives me hope,” said another. Also, “New York gives me energy.” It was, Mr. Gurung said, a love letter to the city and the sentiment he believed would return.

Speaking of Hearts: The Imitation of Christ featured two in his video – huge, virtual, 3-D human hearts, pulsing around time in designer Tara Sabkoff’s foul-mouthed, ‘n’ flapper collection of deco beaded streetwear , A reference to Kovid-19 and what benefits us. In the end, they burst into bloom, and all that was unbalanced turned into a moment of grace. Which may be the happy ending we all hope for.

New York – the real city – was through the line at several shows. Jason Wu sets his easily digestible sports redux and silk shamats between the walls of a fantasy general store filled with real fruits and vegetables. (She was later donated to City Harvest.) Ulla Johnson dressed in statement sleeves and per-sleeved dresses through the marble floor spaciousness of Lincoln Center’s public spaces. Instead of indicating emptiness, the effect was to convey that someday, those rooms would be filled again. And so there was something to wear here.

For sheer exaggeration, however, it was hard not to smile at the neoclassical rags of Libertine’s dancing brocade, the khaki adornment with rhyme, and the shooting star suit, traced by silver lines. Or Colina Strada’s Anemorphs: Appellate discussion in the form of T-shirt dresses with huge pages at the hips and various pastel prints separated only in nature, sometimes seen in creatures. Point, it is metamorphosis season. We can embrace it.

Christian Cowan encapsulated his short film Bowen Yang and Chloe Finman of “Saturday Night Live” in their short film, playing versions of crashed, sweatsuit-clad in themselves, winged, studded and sequenced with a high of magnificence -At the party (otherwise empty) at the Pierre Hotel. At the end of the skit, as the pair stumbled out of the building, now dressed in sequinned gray-toned pajamas (Mr. Yang) and a lilac crystal top, zip-up miniskir and faux fur (Ms. Finman), they wore a Run across the confused fan who is shocked to see his new look. Are they playing a role? He asked.

The answer, they are very simple: “This is who we are now.”

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