Thursday, February 11, 2010

Whether in a Park or Center, Fashion Lives

A sketch of an ensemble from the Ports 1961 Fall 2010 Collection. Photo courtesy of Ports 1961.

HEAD’S UP: Yours Truly, alas, alas, will not comment on the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Fall 2010 Collections in New York with the vigor that she did in September for the Spring 2010 Collections. It’s simply impossible because I am in the Southern branch (Louisiana) of the family seat tending to my mother who is hospitalized in serious condition. While I won’t be in New York in person during Fashion Week, I will be there in spirit to offer remarks on some of the proceedings. Do stay tuned, and thank you for your support.

New York Fashion Week at Bryant Park is much like a relay race. The strongest are placed at or near the beginning and at or near the end. In this case, BCBGMaxAria is on early today and Tommy Hilfiger ends it on Thursday, 18 Feb. Both collections are strong in the sense that they will draw huge crowds to the Tent, the largest show space at the tents in the park.

Speaking of BP – no doubt you’ve heard – the Fall 2010 Collections are the last to be held in this beautiful patch of God’s green earth. It seems that Fashion Week is not democratic enough. True, it’s for industry folks, buyers, media, tastemakers and such. On the otherhand, BP is a place/space for the people – the huddled masses and such. Another wrinkle is that Fashion Week has grown too big for the park, spiking from 30-something shows that first year in 1993 to more than a hundred over recent years. Adding to the drama, there was even talk that Los Angeles (doesn’t that city have its own) was trying to snag Fashion Week, driving Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the CFDA and others to find another home for this local cash cow.

To that end, as early as next Thursday after the 8 p.m. Hilfiger show, the tents will begin to fold, leaving the nearby declining Garment District for larger, more prosperous quarters to the north at Lincoln Center. 'Tis going to be interesting to see how much, if any, will be lost in relocation. Will the tourists, onlookers, gatecrashers, wannabes, thrillseekers, protestors, pretenders, poseurs follow the circus? In September, it’ll be on!

Meanwhile, likley highlights today are the Ports 1961 collection “inspired by the relationship between discovery and invention,” noted designer Tia Cibani. And there is the Heart Truth’s Red Dress Collection 2010 at 7 this evening in the Tent. Expect a red carpet atmosphere as celebrity types – Valerie Harper, Felicity Huffman, Kim Kardashian, Robin Roberts and Jordin Sparks – walk the runway in red dresses designed by the likes of Oscar de la Renta, John Galliano, Donna Karan and Tadashi Shoji to raise awareness about heart disease among women.

Some others showing today at the tents and elsewhere: Mackage, Richard Chai, Miguel Antoinne, Duckie Brown, Toni Maticevski, Callula Lillibelle, George McCracken, Farah Angsana and Mik Cire by Eric Kim.

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