Seven days of chic in New York

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

From supermodels to supernatural models, the New York shows brought with them structured sportswear and eclectic layering, says Agata Belcen

Kicking off the autumn/winter 2012 show schedule in suitably bold fashion, the New York collections were awash with shades of red, from pillar-box to oxblood.

There was lacquered leather, too, knee-high boots, supermodels and, as always, plenty of fur – on the streets as well as the runways. The wind cut through coats on the way to the shows on the pier: a quick, cold gust to catch your attention and sharpen your senses for the coming season.

Marc Jacobs

The shoes looked Pilgrimesque, apart from the rhinestone buckle and flowers; the calf-length skirts and A-line wool coats matronly were it not for psychedelic print. The construction of each ensemble was a triumph of the imagination at Marc Jacobs. Contained within the collection – leather and lace, print and sparkle, cropped, long and oversized.

Calvin Klein

Klein's models had their hair slicked down with a reflective sheen, and there were a few black, short-cropped styles also worn close to the head, reminiscent of early Yohji Yamamoto. Metal bands, worn as belts, gathered voluminous dresses in at the waist to create feminine shapes in a beautiful, minimal approach to romance, with simple evening dresses drawing attention to the hips and breasts.

Marc By Marc Jacobs

Stern caps and heavy boots became the upper and lower borders of a cathode ray tube within which all manner of prints flickered: florals, chequerboards, polka dots and tartans gave the feel of a cocktail party at a Russian military research facility in some alternative 1993, where the USSR had yet to fall. Comrade Jacobs' own federal union has never been mightier or more ubiquitous.

Proenza Schouler

New York has revelled in sportswear this season, with designers engrossed in knee-high boots and outerwear. At Proenza, narrow strips of the fabric were woven into a grid on skirts and dresses or cut-out to form an exoskeleton jacket. But what made this collection their own was the textures and detailing in their brocades.

Jason Wu

New York loves Jason Wu and, although he has yet make the same impact in Europe, tastes are warming to his style. He showed his increasing presence by sending down a veritable army of models and they marched to his tripartite vision of China: Mao-inspired uniform, the embellished shine of the Qing Dynasty and 1940s Sino-Hollywood.

Victoria Beckham

Although there was none of the corsetry of previous seasons, there was so much constriction in Beckham's collection you felt short of breath just watching it: where there weren't tight double belts, there were stripes that looked like them and black tromp l'oeil panels that repainted the silhouette into an even more striking hourglass.

Ralph Lauren

Opening with the Downton Abbey theme tune, Lauren explored women's rights and appropriate antebellum modes of behaviour, dressing the lady as country gentleman. There was a series of professionals: the lawyer in herringbone tweed; a bowler-hatted banker; the doctor with a mini-alligator medical case, all adorned with caps and peacock feathers.

Alexander Wang

Wang's show commenced with a hullaballoo around South African band Die Antwoord and ended with cheers for the finale ensemble of models, which included Carmen Kass, Shalom Harlow and Gisele. The collection comprised fabrics that Wang had himself custom developed – lacquered tweed, waxed suede, vinyl, shrink-wrap jacquard knits – all cut with precision and compiled in a restrained palette.

Rodarte

The Mulleavy sisters draw deeply from film history, often titles that convey a sense of wonder and magical romance, such as The Wizard of Oz or Sleeping Beauty. Romance manifested itself in dropped waists and lace collars that looked like they were floating. An early 20th century look in the double-breasted coats, jackets and loose sleeves gave the collection a strong vintage feel.

Donna Karan

Thirties gangsters and Marlene Dietrich were a welcome, flamboyant and cartoonish presence in Donna Karan's collection. Wide lapels and shoulders on reworked double-breasted suit jackets brought to mind urban fat cats. Citing architecture as one of her references, it's clear that Karan's well-documented association with New York City hasn't disappeared – merely re-imagined into one with Gotham City.

Manhattan Moments

Thom Browne

This presentation was a Tim Burton-esque affair. Performed to the theme tune from Edward Scissorhands, it was an ode to 10 fictional women who had died for fashion. Ten suits lay in 10 coffins, but when the music started, they stood up and more models looped around them wearing a sculptural collection of voluminous proportions.

Diane Von Furstenberg

Yvan Mispelaere is now in his second year at Diane von Furstenberg and the collections have become more and more compelling with each season. Particularly delightful, seen later at the showroom appointment, were handbags embellished with surrealist motifs such as eyes and keyholes.

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
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: Business Development Manager / Sales - OTE £45,000

    £35000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is a solutions / s...

    Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £45,000

    £18000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Executive is required t...

    Recruitment Genius: Test Development Engineer

    £35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you inspired to bring new a...

    Recruitment Genius: Trainee Motor Engineer

    £14000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

    Day In a Page

    Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

    Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

    Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
    Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

    The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

    Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
    Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

    The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

    Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
    The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

    The future of songwriting

    How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
    William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

    Recognition at long last

    Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
    Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

    Beating obesity

    The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
    9 best women's festival waterproofs

    Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

    These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
    Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

    Wiggins worried

    Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
    Liverpool close in on Milner signing

    Liverpool close in on Milner signing

    Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
    On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

    On your feet!

    Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
    With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

    The big NHS question

    Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
    Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

    Thongs ain't what they used to be

    Big knickers are back
    Thurston Moore interview

    Thurston Moore interview

    On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
    In full bloom

    In full bloom

    Floral print womenswear
    From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

    From leading man to Elephant Man

    Bradley Cooper is terrific