New York Fashion Week: Fashion statements for the Instagram generation by Victoria Beckham

 

New York Fashion Week is often perceived as a triumph of salesmanship over showmanship. Artistic endeavours are all well and good, but it won’t pay those extortionately high Manhattan rents.

That’s not to say there aren’t flashy theatrics and inventive clothes here: for the former, see Alexander Wang’s autumn/winter 2014 show, held in Brooklyn on Saturday evening. A rotating platform and blasting hot-air vents transformed black thermo-chromatic clothes into brilliant colour for a memorable finale. Memorable, because it was instantly immortalised on Instagram.

Wang’s clothes do very well online, not just sales-wise, but in terms of creating an impact and a buzz. This outing was saturated with sickly colour, chartreuse, electric blue and aubergine as well as lots of black. They glowed phosphorescent in the light of several thousand iPhone cameras simultaneously snapping.

But they’re relatively easy to wear. This is a quality Wang brings to his offerings for the Parisian label Balenciaga, too. It’s one of the reasons the luxury conglomerate Kering employed the young talent: creating covetable, unchallenging product that chings at the tills.

Victoria Beckham is also a designer of the Instagram age, but in a different way. With David, Brooklyn, Romeo, Cruz and Harper in the front row, the cameras tend to be diverted from the catwalk.

 

The clothes are quiet, reserved, luxurious. This time, coats and dresses were loosely looped with a thick gold chain, models strode out on flat crocodile winklepickers, and pleated dresses were folded around the body. There were distinct echoes of Phoebe Philo’s last outing for Céline: but fashion is full of Philo-philes.

Beckham’s fashion is ideally suited for New York. It’s polished, it’s expensive, it will break the bank but never break new ground. Beckham may not have been schooled in how to design clothing (she readily admits that), but she knows what well-heeled, well-off women will want to buy. She’s clever.

Joseph Altuzarra is clever too. But his clothes are more difficult. Altuzarra is a sexy, souped-up label, curvy seams carving out new erogenous zones around his models. This collection showed Altuzarra in a softer mood, opening with bathrobe-soft double face coats cocooning models in cobalt blue, khaki and fuchsia, with sensuality rather than sexuality evoked in apron-front dresses of heavily-textured embroidered cloth.

They looked a bit like Ikea rag rugs strapped against the models’ bodies. Difficult to pull off. But, unlike many others at New York Fashion Week, Altuzarra is worth the effort.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Arts and Entertainment
This weekend's 'Big Hero 6' by Disney Animation Studios
arts + ents
News
i100
News
Budapest, 1989. Sleepware and panties.
newsDavid Hlynsky's images of Soviet Union shop windows shine a light on our consumerist culture
Arts and Entertainment
Eleanor Catton has hit back after being accused of 'treachery' for criticising the government.
books
News
In humans, the ability to regulate the expression of genes through thoughts alone could open up an entirely new avenue for medicine.
science
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Fashion

    Recruitment Genius: Transport Administrator / Planner

    £20000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing reinforcing s...

    Austen Lloyd: Corporate Tax Associate - London

    Excellent Package: Austen Lloyd: CITY - HIGHEST QUALITY INTERNATIONAL FIRM - A...

    Austen Lloyd: Senior Law Costs - London City

    Excellent Package: Austen Lloyd: CITY - EXCELLENT FIRM - We have an outstandin...

    Austen Lloyd: In-House Solicitor / Company Secretary - London

    Excellent Package: Austen Lloyd: IN-HOUSE - NATIONAL CHARITY - An exciting and...

    Day In a Page

    Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

    Isis hostage crisis

    The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
    Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

    The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

    Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
    Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

    Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

    This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
    Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

    Cabbage is king again

    Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
    11 best winter skin treats

    Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

    Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
    Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

    Paul Scholes column

    The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
    Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

    Frank Warren's Ringside

    No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
    Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

    Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
    Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
    Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

    Comedians share stories of depression

    The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
    Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

    Has The Archers lost the plot?

    A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
    English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

    14 office buildings added to protected lists

    Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee