Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Top 10 of Fashion Week 2010

It’s New York Fashion Week, ladies and gentleman — which means the fashion world’s glitterati (redundant?) have congregated in New York for eight crazy days and nights to celebrate and preview the completion of the Fall/Winter 2010 lines. Tomorrow the festivities will end, and legions of editors will jump on a plane and head over to England for London Fashion Week. It’s a rough life, keeping up with all this fashion, but somebody’s got to do it.

Attempting to summarize everything that’s happened thus far at New York Fashion Week in this modest corner of The Pitt News is essentially an impossible task, but sometimes a girl has to put on her lipstick and try, right? So here we go, my top 10 of Fashion Week 2010.

1. Alexander McQueen, R.I.P.: In one of the most tragic starts to NYFW possibly ever, Alexander McQueen, maker of all the things elegantly edgy, was found dead in his home last Thursday. Reports say it was suicide. Why is it that the most brilliant minds are also the most tortured? McQueen, you are a legend and will be forever missed.

2. Relocation, relocation, relocation: Sadly, this will be the last year the Fashion Week tents will be pitched in Bryant Park. Starting in December, the shows will venture over to Lincoln Center. Guess the designers on “Project Runway” can’t repeat, “I just want to make it to Bryant Park” anymore. “I just want to make it to Lincoln Center” doesn’t have quite the same ring to it.

3. Who invited you?: Generally, Fashion Week is for the editorial elite and die-hard fans of fashion. This year, however, a new demographic attempted to slip its way past the velvet ropes. Everyone’s favorite pop cultural phenomenon (but really, aren’t they a little two months ago?), the cast of the Jersey Shore, was rumored to have requested fashion show tickets. Newsflash, my Seaside Heights darlings, unless Carolina Herrera decides that Bumpits are the next vision of elegance, you aren’t getting in anywhere that matters.

4. Beyond the clothes: Anyone who’s managed to catch an episode of “Kell on Earth,” Bravo’s brilliant new series about fashion public relations mogul Kelly Cutrone, knows that it takes a whole lot more than clothes to make a fashion show work. The presentations have to create an atmosphere — the lights, the runway, the goodie bags — all have to be on-point. One of the week’s big production winners for me was Erin Wasson x RVCA, who showed in a carpet and furniture store. The models were serenaded by a live performance from Yeasayer, whose quirky international-tinged sounds were the perfect pairing for Wasson’s hip beret-topped T-shirt and legging looks. If you haven’t listened to Yeasayer, and you’re looking for something new, I highly recommend checking out their new album appropriately titled Odd Blood.

5. Velvet Revolver: Fashionista blogger Britt Aboutaleb wrote “A Rant on the Proliferation of Velvet” yesterday and I couldn’t agree more. Velvet, unfortunately, has become one of the runaway trends of Fall 2010. Now, I haven’t worn the stuff since my days of Tuesday night cotillion back in middle school, and I hadn’t really planned on purchasing any swathes of the unflattering fabric anytime soon. Aboutaleb says the fabric “looks cheap — and I don’t mean inexpensive,” and I’m right there with her. While I frequently have a softening toward trends I hate in the beginning, I’m not sure if my opinion will budge on this one.

6. Fashionably early: Perhaps the most shocking move of NYFW was Marc Jacobs’ show starting five minutes early. Known for sending his models down the runway up to two hours late, Marc pulled it together and got things going in record time. There was a slew of fur-trimmed coats, a penchant for cutouts and a shimmery cardigan that I absolutely must have.

7. Alexander Wang: If you’ve ever worn an oversized grey T-shirt, torn jeans and a black beanie, you have Alexander Wang to thank. The designer revolutionized casual-hipster-cool, but this season he did something a little different. To largely mixed reviews, Wang debuted a line of uncharacteristically buttoned-up suit fabrics. He made some peculiar proportion choices, showing cropped blazers over corsets and velvet boots. While the risk factor is admirable, his best strides were when he stuck to monochromatic knits and leather pieces.

8. Haiti Relief: Because the fashion world never turns down an opportunity to do something charitable on a big scale, Naomi Campbell hosted “Fashion for Relief Haiti,” a show that benefited the earthquake relief efforts. Model Agyness Deyn got a little too excited about the endeavor because she fell not once but twice during her stroll down the runway. Oops.

9. High buns, matte nails and nude faces: Good news girls. If you don’t plan on having time to put top coat on your nails or wash your hair next semester, don’t worry about it! Hit those snooze buttons because low-maintenance beauty is here to stay. Rag & Bone and BCBG models walked with clean faces. Ruffian, Behnaz Sarafpour and Catherine Malandrino pulled hair into super-high knots, and matte nails were all over the place. Rest up, ladies.

10. Alice Ritter: After clicking through more shows than I’d like to admit (God bless and its commitment to posting every show faster than you can click your Louboutin heels), I’ve settled on French-born Alice Ritter as one of my favorites. Her blend of plaid, stripes and tweeds are exactly what I want to turn to every fall.

To all the magazine editors teetering around New York’s icy sidewalks, I commend you. Nina Garcia, I hear you wiped out on the way to a show. Don’t worry about it, girlfriend. I haven’t been a vision of grace in the midst of Snowpocalype 2010, either. I’d much rather be trying to crash Charlotte Ronson’s fashion show than pulling on my decidedly unglamorous snow boots and trudging to class. I guess we can’t have everything.

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