Club Monaco Held All-Access Fashion Show, Introducing The New York Fashion Week Spring 2017 Collection, Available Now

For the first time at New York Fashion Week, the customer is the VIP as Club Monaco presented a full-scale fashion show not just for media, but for consumers. On February 10th, the lifestyle brand was the first to invite customers to view its new Men’s and Women’s Spring Collections at its global flagship store on New York City’s Fifth Avenue. The pieces that walked the runway are now available to shop in every Club Monaco store and online, with select items available for the waitlist. In this unprecedented move, Club Monaco is joining the movement within the industry in giving the customer premier access to shop and experience the excitement of New York Fashion Week, thus bypassing the long wait for the designs to hit the sales floor six months later.

Invited guests Include: Katie Holmes*, Cipriana Quann, Drew Barrymore*, TK Quann, Jemima Kirke*, Afton Williamson*, Jeremy Piven*, Marcela Guitierrez*, Grace Coddington, Rachel Finninger*, Kate Bock*, Shaughnessy Brown*, Calu Rivero*, Darroch Putnam*, Gretchen Mol*, Mikey Putnam*, Eric Rutherford*, Alexandra Cronan*, Nick Wooster, Kyleigh Kuhn*, Kate Foley*, Gillian Zinser*, Chelsea Leyland*, Chloe Norgaard, Eleanor Lambert*, Alexa Reynen*, Danielle Savre*, and Aamito Lagum. (*indicates wearing Club Monaco)

Following the show, Club Monaco will bring The New York Fashion Week Collection on the road for customers around the globe. During the month of February, the brand will host a series of consumer events throughout the United States, Canada, the UK and Asia to celebrate the collection, including the following dates:

Club Monaco : Presents Spring 2017

Club Monaco Spring 2017 Fashion Show

North Damen, Chicago (1731 N. Damen Avenue) – February 16, 2017

SoHo, New York City (536 Broadway) – February 16, 2017

Columbus Avenue, New York City (211 Columbus Avenue) – February 16, 2017

Prudential Center, Boston (800 Boylston Street #175) – February 16, 2017

Collins Avenue, Miami (624 Collins Avenue) – February 16, 2017

Sloane Square, London (33 Sloane Square) – February 16, 2017

North Park Center, Dallas (8687 N. Central Expressway, Space R1-1448) – February 16, 2017

Georgetown, DC (97, 3295 M Street) – February 16, 2017

Rideau Centre, Ottawa (50 Rideau Street #308) – February 16, 2017

Robson, Vancouver (1040 Robson Street, #1034) – February 17, 2017

Lenox Square Atlanta (3393 Peachtree Road) – February 17, 2017

Beverly Drive, LA (401 N. Beverly Drive) – February 22, 2017

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Banana Republic And The Council Of Fashion Designers Of America Announce A Second Installment Of Their Partnership Supporting Emerging Designers

Greg Lauren and Banana Republic Collaborate on a Limited-Edition Men’s Capsule Debuting at Select Banana Republic Stores for Holiday 2016

Banana Republic and the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) are excited to continue their partnership with the launch of a limited-edition capsule collection with artist and designer, Greg Lauren. The Greg Lauren for Banana Republic menswear collection debuts at select Banana Republic stores beginning this month. The collection will launch at select Banana Republic retail locations December 6, 2016.banana_republic_logo

The CFDA and Banana Republic first worked together for a special collaboration in Spring 2016, launching a women’s capsule collection created with New York-based design trio, Timo Weiland. For the second installment of their partnership, they have teamed with Greg Lauren to debut a menswear collection that is designed, cut and sewn in Los Angeles. The capsule will include 16 pieces, which marry Lauren’s iconic, utilitarian style with Banana Republic‘s classic American sportswear sensibility.

the-council-of-fashion-designers-of-america-logo

The Council Of Fashion Designers Of America logo

The Council of Fashion Designers of America, Inc, (CFDA) is a not-for-profit trade association founded in 1962 that leads industry-wide initiatives and whose membership consists of more than 450 of America’s foremost womenswear, menswear, jewelry, and accessory designers. In addition to hosting the annual CFDA Fashion Awards, which recognize the top creative talent in the industry, the organization owns the Fashion Calendar, and serves as the official keeper of New York Fashion Week. It stages the bi-annual New York Fashion Week: Men’s.

Our partnership with Banana Republic has allowed two designers the opportunity to grow and expand their consumer and production capacities in ways that otherwise may not have been possible,” says Steven Kolb, President and Chief Executive Officer of the CFDA. “We are happy to be able to work with an iconic American brand like Banana Republic and look forward to debuting the Greg Lauren for Banana Republic collection this holiday.”

greg-lauren-los-arys-723x420

Greg Lauren (Los Arys)

After gaining recognition as a painter, Greg Lauren created Greg Lauren in 2011 with the mission of “designing clothing from the perspective of being an artist, and making garments using an artistic approach” Specializing in a “destroyed but elegant” aesthetic, the collection combines repurposed vintage military fabrics with new fabrics put through unique artistic processes to give everything a one of a kind feeling and aesthetic. Greg Lauren is now available in over 50 boutiques worldwide, and is made entirely in Los Angeles. Continue reading

Etihad Airways Partners With Jimmy Choo In Celebration Of The Iconic Luxury Brand’s 20th Anniversary

As New York Fashion Week takes flight, Collaboration Launches with an Exclusive 20th Anniversary Event and High-Profile Exhibition at New York Fashion Week

Supermodel Amber Valletta Unveils Airline’s Special A380 Aircraft Livery Featuring “NYFW: The Shows” Logo and Jimmy Choo Campaign on Board

Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates and the official airline of New York Fashion Week, announced the extension of its commitment to the global fashion industry by collaborating with iconic luxury brand Jimmy Choo. The award-winning airline is celebrating the world-renowned designer’s 20th Anniversary with events at John F. Kennedy (JFK) International Airport and in New York City.etihad-airways-logo

This collaboration follows an announcement made in April 2016 of the airline’s comprehensive global agreement with WME | IMG as a long-term partner of the fashion industry, connecting the airline with the fashion capitals of the world. New York is the latest stop in the sponsorship, which supports 17 fashion week events worldwide annually. It follows the airline’s recent participation at Lakmé Fashion Week in Mumbai, and shows in London and Milan will follow next month.jimmy-choo-logo

In celebration of the brand’s 20th Anniversary, Creative Director, Sandra Choi, hosted a private cocktail party during New York Fashion Week, where the exclusive music video was premiered.

If you try to shut us down,

We’ll show you just how we get down

And just to even up the score

We’re coming kicking down your door…

– Lyrics from the Jimmy Choo music video

Set to rap artist Leikeli47’s power anthem “Girl Gang”, the kick-ass music video stars Amber Valletta, Jasmine Tookes, Lexi Boling, Milla Jovovich, Sasha Pivovarova, Taylor Hill and Xiao Wen Ju.

sasha-pivovarova-sandra-choi-and-amber-valletta-at-the-20th-anniversary-music-video-launch-party-courtesy-of-jimmy-choo

Sasha Pivovarova, Sandra Choi and Amber Valletta at the 20th Anniversary Music Video launch party. (Courtesy of Jimmy Choo) PHOTO CREDIT: MADISON MaGAW/BFA, LARRY BUSCACCA/GETTY

The video is really a reflection of who the modern Jimmy Choo woman is today. She’s dynamic, confident, playful and living life on her own terms. It’s a video that’s visually beautiful, fun and makes you cheer for today’s heroines.” says Choi.

In attendance were Diane Kruger, Olivia Culpo, Brendan Fallis, Chanel Iman, Caroline Vreeland , Alan Cumming, Jordan Barrett, Kaia Gerber, Jessica Lowndes, Devon Windsor, Kate Sumner, Sara Sampaio, Genevieve Jones, Nicole Trunfio, Sean O’Pry and many more.

https://youtu.be/prGwO6KN_dc

New York Fashion Week is the second major partnership for Etihad Airways in New York following its principle partnership with the New York City Football Club.

As part of the celebration, Etihad Airways served as a supporting partner of Jimmy Choo‘s VIP event hosted by the international models featured in the 20th Anniversary campaign including Amber Valletta, Milla Jovovich, Sasha Pivovarova, Lexi Boling, Taylor Hill, Jasmine Tookes and Xiao Wen Ju. Highlights of the event included the unveiling of the brand’s 20th Anniversary campaign video featuring the models and a live musical performance by Mary J. Blige.

Etihad Airways At NYFW-6

(From left to right, flanked by Etihad Airways cabin crew), Amina Taher, Head of Corporate Communications – Etihad Airways and Sandra Choi, Creative Director – Jimmy Choo celebrate the opening of the Jimmy Choo VIP Lounge hosted by Etihad Airways and WME | IMG at Skylight at Moynihan Station. (PRNewsFoto/Etihad Airways)

Jimmy Choo has been revered by the global jetset for two decades, so it is fitting that Etihad Airways partners with the iconic brand, which shares similar ambitions – to provide the ultimate in elegance, sophistication and comfort,” said Patrick Pierce, Vice President of Sponsorships.

20 Years of Iconic Jimmy Choo Red Carpet Moments

Our aspiration is to become the airline of choice for the global fashion community, and our collaboration with Jimmy Choo serves as a natural extension of our fashion week alignment, particularly during New York Fashion Week,” added Pierce.

On the fashion runway, Etihad Airways is hosting a VIP lounge with WME | IMG and Jimmy Choo at Skylight at Moynihan Station, one of the main venues for the Spring/Summer 2017 shows throughout New York Fashion Week, from September 8 through 15. The lounge features a retrospective of the 20 most iconic Jimmy Choo shoes from the past 20 years, as curated by the brand’s Creative Director, Sandra Choi, and imagery from the Anniversary campaign, shot by Craig McDean. Along with the airline’s world-class cabin crew, the lounge will act as a hub for Etihad Airway’s signature hospitality and will feature imagery from the airline’s uniform campaign shot by Norman Jean Roy. Italian furniture company Poltrona Frau, the airline’s exclusive onboard partner for luxury leather upholstery in The Residence, First and Business classes, are featured within the lounge. In addition to the brand’s sofas, the display will include armchairs designed by Peter Marino, all featuring the top quality leather for which Poltrona Frau is known worldwide. Continue reading

New York Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2017 Shows Preview: Kia STYLE360 Announces Star-Studded Designer Line Up, Schedule and Sponsors for New York Fashion Week September 12-15, 2016

Serena Williams, Ashley Graham, Kristin Cavallari and More To Strut Their Stuff On The Runways

Hollywood & fashion special event firm, A-list Communications has announced Kia STYLE360, its New York Spring/Summer 2017 Women’s Runway Previews September 12th – 15th, 2016. This season will mark the 12th annual year at New York Fashion Week, highlighting its signature formula of fashion week events among exciting ready-to-wear celebrity designer brands, musical performances, high fashion designer brands, and fashion-fan favorites each season.710cfe_52d61c2b734e4726b0e8bfeec1d5538b~mv2

Started in 2004, and then called “Style Lounge,” this modest fashion platform launched out of the gate as a stage for some of today’s leading fashion brand designers like Rodarte, Rebecca Minkoff, Patricia Fields, and Zaldy. Over the decade, and after a name change as well, STYLE360 New York Fashion Week has evolved into a launching pad for trending and celebrity designers such as Avril Lavigne, Daisy Fuentes, the Kardashians, and Kristin Cavallari to name a few. Likewise, fashion industry elite models who have graced STYLE360’s stages and venues includes Karolina Kurkova, Naomi Campbell, Carol Alt, Tyson Beckford, Kendall Jenner and Jessica White, as well as countless celebrities including the Kardashians, Brooke Burke, Brittany Snow, Gerard Butler, Chris Noth, Tommy Hilfiger, Lauren Conrad, Rosario Dawson, and dozens more.

An element that always separates Kia STYLE360 shows from the usual fashion week clutter, are the high-profile musical performances each Season. Highlights from the past ten years include performances by Austin Mahone, Wyclef Jean, Natasha Bedingfield, JoJo, Neon Trees, Cher Lloyd, Estelle and appearances by music legends like Richie Sambora, Slash, Kanye West, Ne-Yo, Pete Wentz, Rick Ross and many more.

This year’s schedule builds on the success of last year with many renewing designer names as well as renewed title sponsor, Kia Motors (www.Kia.com). Kia returns this year to invite the fashion industry to discover the all-new 2017 Cadenza sedan with integrated activations, on-site car displays and a fleet of vehicles available to transport fashion editors, celebrities and VIPs to and from the fashion shows and events. The stunningly beautiful Cadenza improves upon all the elements that made its predecessor an award-winning success, boasting a precisely crafted cabin, cutting edge technology for connectivity and driver assistance, a stronger body structure, and powertrain enhancements for a more premium experience behind the wheel.

Events kick-off with entertainment and lifestyle retailer HSN’s third successive show presenting their Serena Williams Signature Statement Collection with Ms. Williams taking the stage two days after New York’s U.S. Open Women’s Championship. The week wraps up with Kia STYLE360‘s third annual fashion event with celebrity, actress and fashion designer Kristin Cavallari, who will present her new Emerald Duv Jewelry Collection, new shoe releases from her Chinese Laundry Collection as well as signed copies of her book “Balancing on Heels”.

This September’s line-up of fashion shows and festivities for Kia STYLE360 includes the following:

Monday, September 12th

3:00pm: HSN Presents Serena Williams Signature Statement Collection Runway Show

7:30pm: Designer Fashion Runway Show TBA

9:00pm: KIA STYLE360 Presents Serena Williams Signature Statement Collection by HSN After-party at Bagatelle NYC

Tuesday, September 13th

10:30am: Raul Penaranda Spring 2017 Momentum

3:00pm: Vipe Activewear Collection Fashion Show with Angela Simmons

7:30pm: Tumbler and Tipsy by Michael Kuluva

Wednesday, September 14th

3:00pm: Addition Elle Presents Holiday 2016 RTW + Ashley Graham Lingerie Collection

7:00pm: Row A Seat 4 Collection SS17 by Frontrow

Thursday, September 15th

7:00pm: Kia STYLE360 Hosts Kristin Cavallari Collections for Emerald Duv Jewelry & Chinese Laundry at Row NYC

All fashion shows will again be staged at the two-level Metropolitan West located at 639 West 46th Street with special integrations including live streaming of shows, 360 degree virtual reality broadcasts, and Facebook live streams along with its usual parade of celebrity guests and musical performances to be announced closer to fashion week.

Other renewing sponsors generously supporting the September 2016 season includes Not Your Mother‘s hair care (www.nymbrands.com), who will style all fashion shows by lead hair stylist Michele Carrillo and her NYM branded professional-stylist team. Makeup partners, LimeLight by Alcone (www.limelightbyalcone.com) and MustaeV U.S.A., a prestigious Korean artistry make up brand (www.mustaevusa.com) are also renewed partners this season.

Official hotel and after-party partner for the third consecutive year is Row NYC conveniently located near the Kia STYLE360 fashion pavilion at 700 Eighth Avenue. The art-driven, New York-centric hotel will provide its elegant brand of hospitality and accommodations to celebrity and VIP guests as well as host the closing fashion event. Row NYC is also offering exclusive tickets to a Kia STYLE360 show (winners’ choice) and invitations to the closing event hosted at the hotel. (Details can be found at www.rownyc.com.)

Finally, award winning wine producer, Line 39 Wines (www.line39wines.com) by O’Neill Vintners and Distillers returns in an elevated presence to graciously pour its California Pinot Grigio and Pinot Noir across all events.

New sponsors to the program this September include Eternal Water (www.eternalwater.com) who will keep guests hydrated and refreshed with its Pure and Pristine Artesian Water and its beautifully designed BPA free bottle which will be collected for recycling after each event. Additionally, OtterBox Products Inc. (www.otterbox.com) joins to present its line of fashionable, sleek smartphone cases to NYFW in the OtterBox Lounge and will debut some of the new looks across a couple runway shows. New York City hotspot and fashion model sanctuary Bagatelle, one of New York’s trendiest restaurants, will serve as official nightclub partner hosting Kia STYLE360’s intimate VIP event.

Kia STYLE360 also proudly welcomes ChapStick (www.chapstick.com) to its line-up of sponsors this season. ChapStick will help guests feel runway ready with new ChapStick Total Hydration Moisture + Tint – which provides long-lasting moisture plus a hint of color from the experts in lip care.

For more information on this season’s designers, to get inside access, view runway trends, special promotional offers, and watch behind the scenes celebrity interviews as well as live streaming from the runway, please visit http://style360nyfw.com/. Twitter @NYFWSTYLE360 and Facebook @STYLE360. Official hashtag this season is #KiaSTYLE360NYFW. Continue reading

Students and Graduates from The Art Institutes to Debut Fall/Winter 2016 Collections During New York Fashion Week

13 Up-And-Coming Fashion Designers To Experience Career-Defining Moments On New York City Runway

New York Fashion Week is an event attended by the fashion elite, celebrities, and designers working to prove that their hard work and dedication can make an impact in the fashion industry. For 13 designers from The Art Institutes system of schools, Fashion Week is a chance to showcase the talent, determination, and creativity they’ve transformed into their Fall/Winter 2016 collections.

Stephanie Castanon sketch

Stephanie Castanon sketch

These designers—both current students and recent graduates—understand that fashion is more than buzz-worthy garments. It’s a process that involves inspiration, sketching, fabric selection, garment construction, and endless revisions before a creation can be shown. They’ve overcome challenges and pushed their creative limits. Along the way, they’ve proven that they have what it takes to design and present a collection on one of fashion’s most prestigious runways. This marks the seventh season that The Art Institutes has partnered with New York Fashion Week to provide a career-starting platform for its budding designers. These promising designers will debut their Fall/Winter 2016 collections on Tuesday, February 16, at 8:30 pm, at The Arc, Skylight at Moynihan Station.

Alejandra Isunsa sketch

Alejandra Isunsa sketch

Since their selection, the 13 finalists have stretched their personal boundaries and worked closely with faculty mentors to finalize their collections. The designers were born as far away as Iran, Vietnam, and Haiti. Yet each shares a common bond—a love of fashion and the determination to pull together a collection within a demanding timeframe. The designers are current students and graduates of Art Institutes locations in Fort Lauderdale, Houston, Miami, New York City, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Portland, and Vancouver.

Bahareh Memarian sketch

Bahareh Memarian sketch

We are excited to once again showcase our students’ and graduates’ work at New York Fashion Week. This is a true career building experience for them, in which their passion, skills, and creativity can shine through in front of an international audience,” said Tim Moscato, Chief Operating Officer, The Art Institutes.

Get a front row view of the show during the live stream runway event, 8:30 p.m. on February 16. Visit https://www.artinstitutes.edu to watch online alongside viewers from across the globe. Additional information about the designers’ backgrounds and the inspiration for their collections is featured on The Art Institutes’ blog, https://www.artinstitutes.edu/blog. (Follow The Art Institutes On Facebook TwitterTumblrInstagram, and YouTube.)

Cunard Announces Fashion and Culinary Event Cruises in 2016

New York Fashion Week’s Own Fern Mallis Takes to the High Seascunard-logo

Cunard has today announced two exciting event cruises for 2016, celebrating the worlds of fashion, food, music and dance. From the launch of its very first Transatlantic Fashion Week’ to a culinary tour of the British Isles to the largest Big Band Balls at sea, guests on each cruise will be immersed in the very best of these themes.

Cunard Three Queens: Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth

Cunard’s Three Queens: Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth

Defining true excellence at sea with over 175 years of legendary voyages, Cunard is the operator of luxury ocean liners Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth, renowned for impeccable White Star Service, gourmet dining and world-class entertainment. Cunard has long been synonymous with the quest for new discoveries since the company’s first paddle-wheeled steamer Britannia crossed the Atlantic in 1840. Today, Cunard offers the only regularly scheduled Transatlantic liner service and continues the legacy of world cruising which it began in 1922.

The inaugural ‘Transatlantic Fashion Week’ voyage on the Queen Mary 2 arrives in one of the style capitals of the world, New York, the very same day New York Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2017 Shows begins, after an extra special 7 night (1-8 September) voyage across the Atlantic on board the most famous ocean liner in the world.

Dame Zandra Rhodes

Dame Zandra Rhodes

The voyage will be hosted by a number of very significant names from the industry, as guests will be treated to ‘an audience with’ pioneering British designer, Dame Zandra Rhodes CBE, Colin McDowell, the highly respected fashion historian and commentator Fern Mallis, the ‘Godmother of Fashion’ and founder of New York Fashion Week.

Fern Mallis ( Credit:  Timothy Greenfield-Saunders)

Fern Mallis ( Credit: Timothy Greenfield-Saunders)

Dame Zandra Rhodes, who has dressed some the world’s most iconic stars and musicians, including Freddie Mercury and Jackie Onassis, said: “I’m extremely excited to be joining Cunard on board Queen Mary 2 for the very first Transatlantic Fashion Week, 2016. For me, it offers the opportunity to share my knowledge and wonderful experiences from throughout my career in fashion, and give guests a taste of what my collection has to offer.

Colin McDowell

Colin McDowell

Dame Zandra Rhodes will also reveal designs from her collections, as emerging faces from Storm modelling agency take to the catwalk during the voyage. Alongside these great fashion authorities, guests will have the opportunity to meet the designers of the future, as students from one of the world’s number one postgraduate fashion programmes, The Royal College of Art, showcase their latest collections on board.

Food lovers can treat themselves to a British Isles Culinary Discovery on board Queen Elizabeth in June next year. The cruise will feature highly reputable names and producers from the world of gastronomy, including Charles Sichel of Maison Sichel and Jilly Goolden, English Wine Critic and UK Television personality. Guests will be able to enjoy regional delicacies from around the British Isles through a range of tailored shore-side excursions, hosted on board events and specially curated menus.

QUEEN MARY 2 AND QUEEN ELIZABETH ROYAL RENDEZVOUS IN SYDNEY HARBOUR Tuesday 22nd February 2011 – Sydney Harbour, Australia - Sydney Welcomes Queen Elizabeth and Queen Mary 2 on Royal Rendezvous on Maiden World Voyage; Cunard’s newest ocean liner, Queen Elizabeth, arrived in Sydney for the first time this morning, following her larger sister, Queen Mary 2, into Sydney Harbour in another historic Royal Rendezvous.   This morning’s visit marks the first time two Cunard liners had ever arrived together in Sydney Harbour. It also recalls an earlier Royal Rendezvous when the original Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth – both then World War II troop ships – passed each other at Sydney Heads on April 9, 1941.    Stretching 294 metres in length and wearing Cunard’s classic red and black livery, the 90,900-tonne Queen Elizabeth met Queen Mary 2 outside Sydney Heads before 5.30am before following her sister into the Harbour and berthing at the Overseas Passenger Terminal at around 7am.   Both midway through their world voyages, the spectacular Queen Elizabeth sailed in from New Zealand while the majestic Queen Mary 2 arrived from Adelaide.   Launched by Her Majesty The Queen in October last year, the elegant Queen Elizabeth is carrying around 2000 guests and almost 1000 crew on her 103-night world voyage. The joint visit of Queen Elizabeth and Queen Mary 2 is expected to generate close to $3 million for the Sydney economy.

QUEEN MARY 2 AND QUEEN ELIZABETH ROYAL RENDEZVOUS IN SYDNEY HARBOUR
Tuesday 22nd February 2011 – Sydney Harbour, Australia – Sydney Welcomes Queen Elizabeth and Queen Mary 2 on Royal Rendezvous on Maiden World Voyage; Cunard’s newest ocean liner, Queen Elizabeth, arrived in Sydney for the first time this morning, following her larger sister, Queen Mary 2, into Sydney Harbour in another historic Royal Rendezvous.

Each of the three Cunard Queens (Mary, Elizabeth and Victoria) will host their very own Big Band Balls in November 2016 for dance and music lovers around the world to enjoy. Cunard’s biggest orchestras of the year will delight guests with music from Glenn Miller, Count Basie and Duke Ellington. The big band phenomena originated in the US in the 1920s era, and soon took the world by storm by creating the party of all parties. Next year each of the three Queens will look forward to playing host to their own exclusive musical spectaculars.QM2_REMASTERED_LOGO_on_black Continue reading

New York Spring/Summer 2016 Fashion Week Review: Betsey Johnson Forever!

Runway Images by Dan Lecca/Front Row/Backstage Images by The Billy Farrell Agency

American designer and renowned fashion icon, Betsey Johnson returned to New York Fashion Week on Friday, September 11th to present her Spring/Summer 2016 collection, entitled The Curious Case of Betsey Button was a retrospective commemorating Betsey’s 50 colorful years in the fashion industry.

Backstage at the Spring/Summer 2016 Fashion Show (Photo Credit: The Billy Farrell Agency)

Backstage at the Spring/Summer 2016 Fashion Show (Photo Credit: The Billy Farrell Agency)

The show which was held at The Arc, Skylight at Moynihan Station (a soul-sucking show space, if ever there is any), was divided into six defining moments in Betsey’s career and kicked off with Betsey’s signature prom princesses of the 2000’s, followed by the “flower power” of the late 80’s/early 90’s. Next came late 70’s punk, followed by the “trippy hippy” early 70’s Betsey Johnson for Alley Cat. Rounding out the decades were the mod mavens of 60’s Betsey Johnson for Paraphernalia. Narration from Betsey herself played over each defining era, for a real trip down memory lane.

I have long held the view that, much like Bob Mackie and a select few designers that have shown at NYFW over the years, Miss Johnson’s collections are generally above review. By her own admission, she is not out to change the world (too much) or find a cure for athlete’s foot. (She is, however, a staunch supporter for finding a cure for Breast Cancer.) She is about creating a balance: injecting fun into her life and work, while still taking it seriously, BUT not too serious. Hence the signature cartwheel and split at the end of her shows, the seemingly wild, all-over-the-place but cohesive sense that marks the collections. Above all, she’s an extraordinary woman. It’s no wonder then, that she is one of the legendary women to be featured in Timothy Greenfield-Sanders‘ latest “List” documentary, American Masters: The Women’s List, to air on PBS on September 25th.

Betsey Johnson. Credit: © Timothy Greenfield-Sanders

Betsey Johnson is to be featured in Timothy Greenfield-Saunders‘ American Masters: The Women’s List, a documentary focusing on their individuals’ exceptional achievements, struggles and identities. All trailblazers in their respective fields, these women share their experiences struggling against discrimination and overcoming challenges to make their voices heard and their influence felt. Credit: © Timothy Greenfield-Sanders

The spring/summer 2016 collection, while mainly serving as a retrospective, had a lot going for it in the here and now. It was filled with ideas that would—and will– work for the season and beyond. Those strapless “prom princess” dresses were paired with long sleeve, street-ready metallic tops that a girl could wear with her skinny jeans and be on-trend. The Veronica Lake hair-dos was also an amazing addition to the overall looks. The second segment was made all the more delicious by the colorful corsets that circled the models’ waists.

In the “Mud Club” section, the standout piece was the red/black chevron pantsuit with a black leather bandeau top. Here, seeing nine (mostly blonde) models with semi-severe chignons, looking very much like Linda Evangelista in her 80’s prime, was a jolt but hey, it worked.

The fourth section was noteworthy for the scrimped, straight hair deftly reminiscent of the period. It was like watching (in a good way, of course) Square Pegs (starring a young Sarah Jessica Parker), a television sitcom from the 80’s. The standouts here were the fur-trimmed teacup print jacket (paired with the granny boots), the patchwork jacket with faux fur sleeves and the soft, draping long “Stevie Nicks” long-sleeve dress.

The iconic Max’s Kansas City was a nightclub and restaurant at 213 Park Avenue South, in New York City, which became a gathering spot for musicians, poets, artists and politicians (in essence, everyone who was anyone), in the 1960s and 1970s. It was opened by Mickey Ruskin (1933–1983) in December 1965. Max’s quickly became a hangout of choice for artists and sculptors of the New York School, like John Chamberlain, Robert Rauschenberg, Larry Rivers, Larry Poons, Brice Marden, Bob Neuwirth, Roy Lichtenstein, Donald Judd, Dan Flavin, Richard Serra, Philip Glass, William S. Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg, René Ricard, Willem de Kooning, and Barnett Newman. It was also a favorite hangout of Andy Warhol and his entourage, who dominated the back room, including some of the women represented in this section. It also showed the wide range of style of the time, including the navy polka dot mini with a white Peter Pan collar. Stunning.

2015 marked a year long celebration for Johnson. In addition hitting her 50th year in the industry, Betsey was awarded the CFDA Geoffrey Beene Lifetime Achievement Award. The party will continue into Holiday 2015 as Johnson releases a limited edition 50th Anniversary Collection which includes dresses, activewear, handbags, shoes, jewelry all in a signature Betsey Johnson print. Continue reading