Alexander Wang is spearheading a new guard of designers opting to stage runway shows in New York in June. He has also chosen to cut his own collections to two a year, showing in June and December. While these are basically resort and pre-fall, he is referring to them by number.
Switching one’s “main collections” to resort and pre-fall makes commercial sense, as these remain in store far longer than the more traditional spring/summer or fall/winter. However, whether this new show trend will fly or go the same way as see-now-buy-now remains to be seen. That’s not to disparage either, though. While SNBN represented a brief flirtation as opposed to a lasting trend, it opened the floor for experimentation, allowing designers to show when and how worked best for them rather than simply being enslaved to the calendar.
But now we’ve got that out of the way, Collection 1 was presented last night in an industrial venue in the city’s Seaport district. Inspiration stemmed from Wang’s own family’s roots as immigrants, according to the show notes, “a distorted sensibility and a view of the American dream seen through Alexander Wang’s personal heritage and community.” Whatever you choose to call it, there was a lot to love, and here are all the show’s must-see moments.
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KAIA AND BELLA IN BANDANAS
Kaia Gerber and Bella Hadid twinned in workboots with chunky soles, stripy socks, tiny shorts, bra tops, glitterball bags featuring a “Thank You” slogan and oversize Axl Rose bandanas with diamante embellishment. Less about heavy metal, more about getting your rocks on.
They could have been a nod to anti-pollution masks worn by the city’s cycle couriers or surgical versions traditionally sported to prevent the spread of infection, but either way, Wang’s versions, pimped to the max with punky safety pins, could well become a surprise hit.
ADIDAS ORIGINALS SNEAKER COLLABORATION
The designer showcased 16 looks featuring a new Adidas Originals sneaker collaboration. The high-tops came in black and black/white, with the latter especially looking like a hybrid of a sneaker and a galosh overshoe. This may or may not have been a pun on the notion of box-fresh. An upside-down version of the Adidas logo appeared on the tongues.
Forget double bagging. Wang upped the ante and triple-bagged his ever-popular Attica fanny pack, layering them up in different lengths as one might multiple necklaces.
Piercings were also much in evidence, calling to mind New York’s tattoo and piercing parlours. But not quite where one might expect. It was the collection’s pumps, rather than models’ noses and earlobes that came with multiple hoops and bars.
In keeping with the “Coming to America” theme, there was also a see-now-buy-now souvenir-themed capsule including tops, umbrellas, bags and bucket hats featuring a print of New York signage created by graphic artist Fergus Purcell. Wang wore the capsule’s cycle shorts (recently popularized by Bella Hadid) to take his final bow.