New York Trend Week: How Black Designers Stole The Present


NEW YORK — Thursday marked the finish of New York Trend Week (NYFW) spring-summer 2023. Other than the storied afterparties, the real-life “Satan Wears Prada” moments and superstar sightings, the weeklong sequence of occasions is heralded as vogue’s grand mainstage. NYFW alerts the kinds and silhouettes that can be dominating retail racks within the coming months, and designers toil their solution to the highest to showcase their collections to consumers, press and vogue lovers.

The official schedule began on Sept. 7, with Christian Siriano’s present at Elizabeth Taylor’s former townhome and an look from pop icon Janet Jackson. With the assistance of rapper Saucy Santana and “Me & U” singer Cassie, The Blonds closed out the week with a bedazzled bang. The commercialization, exclusivity and fanfare of NYFW could also be engaging to the human eye, however at occasions, there may be a lot left to be desired. What’s unseen is the persistent lack of plus-size fashions on the runway, the incessant emailing within the days prior and common fatigue, due to frantic commutes from one venue to a different.

However the tales that designers inform with their vogue strains and the emotions their garments evoke preserve me coming again each season. As a teen, I watched fashions stroll runways at New York Trend Week from residence on my laptop computer. Of the seven reveals I attended this season, some labels tried to reinvent the proverbial wheel, whereas others seemingly misplaced the plot. But the craftsmanship, ambiance and cohesive visions from Felicia Noel, Sergio Hudson and Jason Rembert have been the highlights of my week. To me, it’s no shock that Black designers took the cake this season.

A model walks the runway at the Fe Noel fashion show during September 2022 New York Fashion Week: The Shows on Sept. 09, 2022 in New York City.
A mannequin walks the runway on the Fe Noel vogue present throughout September 2022 New York Trend Week: The Exhibits on Sept. 09, 2022 in New York Metropolis.

Arturo Holmes through Getty Pictures


This season, Grenadian American designer Felicia Noel unveiled her “Want You Had been Right here” assortment. In 25 items, the Brooklyn-based designer showcased a spread of colours, from plum purple to chocolate brown to teal, and employed quite a lot of methods from ruching to wonderful floral embroidery.

Whimsical, romantic and female, Fe Noel’s spring-summer 2023 assortment performed with softness, motion and breadth of human emotion. Characterised because the “duality in three elements” by the present notes, the gathering sought to seize “the emotions of being each carefree and buttoned up, fearless and cautious” because it transitioned from muted to darkish then mild tones. An homage to a girl’s journey on steady progress, Fe Noel’s structured blazers and pantsuits married completely with the female slip clothes and robes. With a runway soundtrack that included Louis Armstrong and Etta James, the craving for the aptly titled assortment was evident.

The ultimate breathtaking piece was a 16-foot practice couture robe titled the “Dre$$.” Produced from pretend paper cash, it symbolizes the $1.6 million that girls lose in retirement financial savings as a result of pay hole. “By partnering with TIAA,” Noel wrote, “the collective purpose is to shut the hole and #RetireInequality for good.”

A model walks the runway during Sergio Hudson fashion show during New York Fashion Week: The Shows on Sept. 10, 2022 in New York City.
A mannequin walks the runway throughout Sergio Hudson vogue present throughout New York Trend Week: The Exhibits on Sept. 10, 2022 in New York Metropolis.

John Lamparski through Getty Pictures


Assortment 10 by Sergio Hudson was vibrant, sharp and attractive. Having styled each former First Girl Michelle Obama and Vice President Kamala Harris, Hudson is the king of blazers and belts. His capacity to rework seemingly drained enterprise apparel right into a spectacle is exceptional. A grasp of jewel tones, he integrated eye-catching colours reminiscent of terracotta, fuschia and cobalt blue into this assortment, together with distinctive twists on basic black and white striped and polka dot prints.

Hudson’s spring-summer 2023 assortment toyed with texture, incorporating velvet, suede and leather-based into varied cuts and crevices. Assortment 10 featured jumpsuits with peekaboo cut-outs, glossy gown silhouettes and sharp construction within the blazers — designed with the intent to empower ladies. “I wished to do one thing stunning, daring, and overtly glamorous and attractive, whereas nonetheless sustaining a clear and trendy really feel,” Hudson stated in a press launch. With sequins, animal print and massive hair interspersed, the present was an ode to drama in one of the best ways.

Following in her mannequin mom’s footsteps, Aoki Lee Simmons made her NYFW debut strolling within the present, alongside names like Winnie Harlow, Leomie Anderson, Maria Borges and others. With vogue legends Misa Hylton and Bethann Hardison within the viewers, there may be really nothing like seeing a Black Southern designer’s imaginative and prescient come to life.

A model walks the runway at the Aliette fashion show during New York Fashion Week on Sept. 14, 2022 in New York City.
A mannequin walks the runway on the Aliette vogue present throughout New York Trend Week on Sept. 14, 2022 in New York Metropolis.

Jason Mendez through Getty Pictures


On the ultimate day of NYFW, after I wanted that further push to make it by way of, the style gods saved the most effective for final. Held within the Georgia Room of the Freehand Lodge, stylist-turned-designer Jason Rembert delivered a shocking assortment, replete with spectacular development and accompanied by vigorous music. (We want extra “Knuck If You Buck” moments on the runway, please, and thanks.)

Rembert, head of the now three-year-old label Aliétte, is aware of how you can make heads flip. His spring-summer 2023 assortment was absolutely the top of glamor. The 30-piece assortment transitioned from vibrant greens to rosy pinks, daring turquoise and golden yellow; the jaw-dropping embroidery coupled with magnificent feather skirts and tiered robes have been one of many many highlights of the present. Upon entry, friends obtained a white flower, a really literal tackle the phrase, “Give somebody their flowers.”

In reminiscence of his late mom, Rembert instructed Vogue, “What I’ve realized over the previous 15, 20 years is that so many Black ladies don’t know the way dope they’re.” That includes corsets and floral accents alongside the neckline and shoulders on varied items, the gathering is female but playful. It was considered one of few cases wherein I discovered myself completely speechless and mesmerized whereas watching a present.


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