Thursday, March 27, 2008

NY Fashion Week S/S 08

It's been a week of clothes and catwalks in New York, as almost a hundred designers released their creations at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week.

There was good. There was bad. There was Victoria Beckham. And then there was aSmallWorld, watching for haute glimmers and high hems from the front row.

Below are our favorite runway picks, plus a healthy dose of buzz - after all, what good is a great dress if nobody's talking about it?

Marc Jacobs
America's moody genius threw a fashion curveball by showing his looks in reverse - first came shredded chiffon dresses, then the poplar daywear in Crayola colored solids and a memorable rugby t-shirt gown stamped with varsity numbers. But what will the fashion crowd remember more - that the collection was messy magic or that the show started two hours late?

For a pair of suburban sisters, Kate and Laura Mulleavy cause a lot of drama. Witness the critical chaos that ensued last year when their Rodarte collection fiercely divided the style community. Vogue hailed them as a revelation and a revolution, while The Times thought their pieces to be pillowcases. This season, with Camilla Nickerson styling, we saw more control in their gowns and rumpled pants that, frankly, looked incredible.

Sari Gueron
Most of these pieces were stamped with a giant 'must have' - sharply- shaped dresses you could pull on in a second; tailored nylon jackets that skimmed the body like cocktail wear. The casually cool surfer girl has found a perfect balance, fusing her bohemian flair with a hint of understated sexiness.

With their trademark whipped shoulders and a new floral print, Brian Wolk and Claude Morais brought more color and sculptured shapes to their runway than ever before. With nods to Southern glamour, avant-garde art, and precocious uptown youth - as seen in several pairs of lush fabric leggings - the clothes garnered particular praise from social starlets like Plum Sykes.

Katy Rodriguez
Styled by Madonna's personal clothes horse, Arianne Phillips, the Katy Rodriguez collection showed LA style at its best - glamorous, blackly beautiful, and too cool to care. Girls particularly swooned for the shiny, tight cocktail dresses in jeweled greens and blues, though they'll have to act now - Katy's pack of starlet fans will surely swipe them fast for their red carpet regime.

Benjamin Cho
Theatrics are expected from this downtown designer, but dangerously clean jackets and dresses were the main course on his runway. Especially admired were a series of sheaths infused with amethysts, which glowed at the heart like a stylish superhero emblem. The scene before the show was just as electric, with Tara Subkoff and Chloe Sevigny arriving in teetering heels, and Proenza Schouler's Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez chatting with The Times' Cathy Horyn in the front row - she's a fan of Ben's; they're old friends from Parsons. The show had an easygoing atmosphere, but it might prove the turning point in Cho's career - he's already been plucked by the L.A. brand Thrive to work as their new designer.

— Faran Krentcil

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