Saturday, September 08, 2012
New York Fashion Week Day 2: W118 by Walter Baker, Rebecca Minkoff, Nicole Miller & Charlotte Ronson
W118 by Walter Baker
The models at W118 by Walter Baker bobbed their heads while wearing custom-made Skullcandy headphones, and they looked so happy and mellow amidst the chaos of the tents, I almost forgot why I was there. Right, the clothes—they were pretty great, with some interesting transparent and textured fabrics, a good amount of chambray, wearable bright colors, and fun jungle prints. Many of the models were clutching nice-looking textured bags, which are Baker's latest edition to his empire. I found myself shopping the collection—always a promising sign—because not only were the clothes fun, but the models looked like they were having fun in them.
Photos by Mina Kim
For spring 2013, Rebecca Minkoff gave a nod to Slim Aarons, a photographer famous for documenting the leisure class at leisure (I highly recommend his book A Place in the Sun if you want to feel particularly envious), with a collection filled with sunny prints in bright colors and easygoing, vacation-friendly separates like Baja tops, sleeveless sweatshirts, and lots of shorts. It was definitely a more casual direction than all of the fabulous dresses she showed last season, but I think that's how a lot of people dress in warmer weather—especially the jetsetters of the world. But let's not forget to pack our MAC minis—I spotted many of Minkoff's irresistible bags (literally; I'm not going to tell you how many I own, lest I embarrass myself) in fun new colors, textures, and decorations. They were definitely a hit with Lauren Conrad, who sat in between Olympians Ryan Lochte and Sandra Richards-Ross—I watched LC take photos of the looks she loved with her iPhone. Stars, they're just like us.
Whereas some designers will ramble on for paragraphs in their show notes about what inspired them this season, Nicole Miller provided a sparse, almost poetic few lines of text touching upon '80s surrealist art, sci-fi, techno, nature, and both good and bad girls. Basically, Miller let the clothes speak for themselves, and the result was one of her strongest collections in recent seasons. Pretty, super-colorful floral prints met body-hugging dresses, sheer tops mingled with sleek shorts and stretch leather leggins, and peplums abounded, the most exciting executions being jackets with removable zip-off flounces. It was a great balance of romantic and futuristic, all incredibly wearable and sure to delight Miller's loyal following.
It's funny, after so many years of attending Fashion Week, I had given up on ever being invited to certain designers' shows. Charlotte Ronson was one of them, but lo and behold, all of a sudden Mina & I were invited this season—with paper invitations, no less! I tend to associate Ronson with casual sportswear, so I was a bit surprised when her first few looks down the runway were ladylike dresses, complete with peplums and lace. However, she added some cool, sporty details like fishnet sleeves, sheer insets, and colorblocking. There was a definite oceanic influence, from scuba-styled dresses to some really beautiful digital ocean prints (I'll admit, being a pisces, I'm a sucker for those) and a dose of my favorite under-used neutral, navy. I'd stay away from the super-fashiony clear colored plastic jackets and bra tops, but definitely grab some of the big, slouchy bags, and take a cue from the fresh-faced makeup and beachy-waved hair. Pretty, no?
Photos by Mina Kim