Friday, September 16, 2011

NYFW Goes Out With Falls, Spills and Cries of Outrage

The Made in Africa: By Arise Magazine Spring 2012 edition showcases work of seven designers from the Continent. Photos by Mark Von Holden/Getty Images.

HEAD’S UP: I repeat, it is officially a tradition at VEVLYN’S PEN. The plan each day of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week is to give a roundup of the best (and worse where applicable) and most interesting Yours Truly witnesses, from shows to trends to sightings to the rather unusual/bizarre. It should go without saying, but it shan’t – this won’t be a comprehensive list simply because a body can’t be everywhere. But, of course, depend on one’s best effort. Drum roll, please …

Day 8, last day
(SOME of the players at the tents and elsewhere): Bill Blass, Calvin Klein Collection, Elene Cassis, Guli, Isaac Mizrahi, L’Wren Scott, Made in Africa: By Arise Magazine, Marc Jacobs, Naeem Khan, Sergio Davila, Stephen Burrows, Threeasfour, Vassilios Kostetsos

final day of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York Spring 2012 was marked by rain, wind, falling temps, a plunging designer and protests.

The latter first. Protests are nothing new at Fashion Week. For years, PETA was a fixture at Dennis Basso or the show of any designer using real fur. But in what has to be a first, Human Rights Watch and others, including children, were assembled outside Cipriani 42nd Street in time for the Guli show to bring attention to human rights abuses in the Central Asian country of Uzbekistan.

What gives? Here’s the deal: Guli designer Gulnara Karimova is the daughter of Uzbek ruler Islam Karimov. IK, who has been in power for some 32 years, is accused by groups who monitor such events of blocking democracy and child labor abuses, among other outrages. Normally, someone like GK would be given a pass because of her accident of birth.

But her case is different because in addition to her talents as a designer, she is also the Uzbekistani ambassador to Spain at the United Nations in New York and the ambassador for her country at the United Nations in Geneva. In this role, the perception is that she supports her father’s policies. While GK is not new to Fashion Week, her pedigree and employment situation are, hence the hue and cry.

The show was initially scheduled for the Studio tent at Lincoln Center. However, whether bowing to pressure from HRW&Co. or not wishing to see unfold even more of a circus atmosphere outside of the tents, Fashion Week sponsor IMG cancelled the show.

“… In light of safety and security concerns due to the heightened security threats in New York City this weekend, IMG and GULI decided that it would be in the best interests of the safety of guests for the GULI show not to proceed as planned at the Lincoln Center,” a spokesperson said in a press statement. “GULI will proceed with the show at a location to be communicated to the invitees ...”

Naturally, the show of 30 ensembles, featuring fabrics native to Uzbekistan, went on. (See snippets in video above.)

The Spring 2012 Sergio Davila collection is informed by a few seminal moments in the Americas. Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images.

In other developments on the last day of Fashion Week, Bill Blass, Calvin Klein, Isaac Mizrahi, Marc Jacobs, Ralph Lauren and Stephen Burrows put some clothes on the runway outside of Lincoln Center by choice. Made in Africa: By Arise Magazine showed on site at Avery Fisher Hall in what has become one of the most anticipated shows of the week in only its fourth season. Yesterday, Arise's late start probably caused many to miss Elene Cassis in the Studio tent. Arise gets a notice for Most Important Acknowledgment for its series of shows dedicated to clean water, a commodity that is in very short supply on the Continent.

In what could have easily been a tragic moment during Fashion Week and which earns the distinction, Breathing a Sigh of Relief, Lanre Da Silva Ajayi fell through an opening on stage-left inside the theater at Avery Fisher Hall as she was making her way out to take a bow after presenting the strongest of the seven Arise shows. Several people managed to fish her out of the maw. Mortified and embarrassed, but thankfully in one piece, the Nigerian designer was able to take her turn on the A-shaped runway to deserving praise.

More shortly from Day 8, last day, including Best Overall Show.For now enjoy photos from some of the day’s shows.

Calvin Klein
Photos by Peter Michael Dills/Getty Images.

Elene Cassis
Photos by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images.

Marc Jacobs
Photos by Peter Michael Dills/Getty Images.

Naeem Khan
Photos by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images.

Ralph Lauren
Photos by Peter Michael Dills/Getty Images.

Next Stop on the Fashion Express – London!
For Spring 2012, designer Paul Costelloe is inspired by a classic Hollywood film. Photo courtesy of Catwalking.

JUST as the lights go down on Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York, they rise today on London Fashion Week.

First up is Irish designer Paul Costelloe who has shown in London the last six or seven seasons. He's gotten good notices, not so surprising considering that he cut his teeth at La Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture. Of course, this is the outfit that decides who shows at the couture shows in Paris.

For Spring 2012, PC is channeling the Bette Davis-Joan Crawford film, "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?"

London Fashion Week shutters on 21 Sept. with Savile Row's venerable Hardy Amies, which is thriving under award-winning (E.Tautz) designer Claire Malcolm. She is presenting her third collection for the label.

Visit to learn more about London Fashion Week.

No comments :

Post a Comment

Creative Commons License
VEVLYN'S PEN: The Wright take on life by Vevlyn Wright is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License .
Based on a work at .
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at .