[Day 1] of my second New York Fashion Week (NYFW) season ever!
When I first started receiving invites last season, I was surprised (to say the least). The idea of experiencing NYFW, something I had only ever seen in movies, was just crazy — and I was nervous. The minute I entered Spring Studios for my first show, I regretted the decision, because I didn’t know what to expect. But wow. WOW, did I feel amazing after watching my first runway show. It may not be for everyone, but it’s an experience, and experiences are what make life exciting.
This season I was surprised to have received as many invites as I did. And in all honesty, I was not prepared for it. I work a full-time as project manager and taking days off was just out of the question. So I decided to share the experience with anyone and everyone. As for myself, I stuck to a schedule of one show during work hours and all my afternoon shows. Which meant picking the ones I was most excited to experience (of course, I would’ve loved to see them all). For Day 1, that was definitely All Things Mochi, while my friend Asma covered the i-am-chen show for me. Followed by afternoon shows for Rizhou and ICY Dynasty.
All Things Mochi:
Jordanian-born, Dubai-Based designer, Ayah Tabari, was a delight to meet during the presentation for her latest PHILIPPINES-inspired collection. All Things Mochi always stays true to it’s colorful, whimsical, and cultural details. The designs definitely have me excited for Spring 2020!
All Things Mochi stayed true to their amazingly unique style of bright colors, cultural integration, and extraordinary prints. This season’s concept around Phillipines, included handcrafted pieces from local artisans - full of colors, ruffles, and floral patterns! Ayah Tabari took All Things Mochi to a whole new level this season, as she presents her pieces in New York for the second time (woo!). The presentation itself included traditional dancers and drum players, only making me appreciate the design even more. The Dubai-based label presented at the Top of the Standard hotel rooftop and indeed went to a high standard of skirts and dresses this collection. The mixture of modern boho/inflused with Asian style and hues created a statement. Needless to say, I am already excited for Spring 2020 outfits!
the show featured one of the freshest new on the scene designer: i-am-chen. An engineering student turned fashion designer, who debuted pops of color and material mixtures, debuted at spring studios. Reason this is so amazing is because Spring studios is known to present high designers, like Michael Kors and Sally LaPointe - a great scene for an up and coming designer.
Zhi Chen, the founder of i-am-chen, represents another type of designer in China — young and emerging. A semi-finalist in the 2018/2019 International Woolmark Prize Hong Kong and a recent graduate of the Parsons School of Design (I attended there Freshman Year - great school!) in New York City. Chen offered fashion fans the highlight of the day with a knitwear-heavy collection that was likely to be a hit across a global market. Her debut at Spring Studios marks a milestone in her career. “Good designs don’t need labels. Good designs are good. It doesn’t matter if they are created in China or in any other country” and I must say, I agree.
Walking into the dimly-lit room, I was already captivated! “ICY Presents: Dynasty” featured 4 designers, each turned to a different historical Chinese dynasty for inspiration. This was my first time experiencing a collective show and it felt so artistic. The concept was to select a period based on each distinct brand style to highlight traditional Asian culture with a modern update.
Walking into Spring Studios the venue was dimly lit, projecting purple lights, playing traditional Chinese music, and a sense of mysticism fell over me. I had zero idea of what to expect, but found my seat and waited for the show. The four designers were: Huiman, Leaf Xia, Fengyi Tan, and All Comes From Nothing - presented in that order. My absolute favorite collections were All Comes From Nothing and Fengyi Tan.
Huiman: The first brand of the night, Huiman, had beauty in its simplicity (top left image) — long, wispy sleeves and loose-fitting clothing in lavender, mint green and white were prominent and calming. The unique use of tassels — either around the model’s neck, covering their face or cinched at the waist, gave this collection a hint of restriction despite the loose tailoring.
Leaf Xia: Leaf Xia’s collection was colorful and unpredictable, and a bit too extreme for my taste. Unlike Hiuman, the colors focused on neons: pink, green, yellow, with bright butterfly and flower prints. Bold in its own way, but I appreciate relatable design far more than artistic statements.
Fengyi Tan: The long and loose blazers of this collection came in various pastels, and the satin on the fringes or collars added a touch of shine. However, it was the accessories that stole the show — slinky-inspired earrings wrapped around the models’ heads, a few models sported masks and others wore headpieces that resembled hats without crowns.
All Comes From Nothing: Black, khaki, blue and gold were dominant throughout designer Eva Xu’s line. Loose frills were hemmed onto the majority of the pieces, and wedged boots with gold soles accompanied them. Overall, the collection was cohesive and consistent but without any standout looks.