Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein and Marc Jacobs dazzle as NYFW wraps

New York Fashion Week wrapped up Thursday with collections from American
design royalty as Ralph Lauren offered cashmere elegance and Calvin Klein
urban eroticism ahead of a final show by Marc Jacobs.

Lauren presented a long, refined silhouette in brown and gray, with dashes of
black, white and cream. The designer, who refuses to use real fur, sent models
down the runway in shearling hats, coats, stoles and cuffs.

Cashmere was ubiquitous — in turtlenecks, cable-knit skirts and
sweaters. Feminine
touches came in an embroidered chiffon skirt with feathers, and beaded
georgette, and there were cowboy influences in wide-brimmed hats, fringes
and tassels.

Ralph Lauren showcases refined elegance

For evening, Lauren offered tuxedo-inspired trouser suits, tailored to trace
the contours of a woman’s body, complete with watch-chains and dress shirts,
and georgette or tulle-beaded evening gowns.

The 75-year-old designer came out to rapturous applause at the end, kissed his
wife and walked the length of the runway dressed in his own label’s jeans
and a plaid shirt. Lauren told reporters that it was a “very sexy”
collection that emphasized “very sharp black silhouettes.”

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Unlike some younger designers at Fashion Week, Lauren kitted out his woman for
fall/winter 2015 in warm fabrics, and he stressed the use of cashmere
and fur-like
hats made from shearling as practical in cold weather.

Former supermodel Christie Brinkley praised the designer for “throwing things
together” so interestingly. “You see comfortable classic pieces but they’re
put together with such style and flair like the thick socks under the
sandals… and very American, very Western-inspired,” she said.

Leather, patchwork shearling at Calvin Klein

Francisco Costa, the Brazilian-born women’s creative director at Calvin
Klein, sent edgy leather and patchwork shearling clothes down the runway in
black, ivory, forest and blush in a SoHo loft. Costa told AFP backstage
that he was inspired by strong women who combine feminism with femininity.

“I think there’s a great energy in New York, in the whole world, women are
speaking up a little more,” he said. One of his inspirations was a book of
polaroids taken by Italian designer Carlo Mollino on the cusp of the 1960s
and 1970s.

“When you think of (French actress Catherine) Deneuve at that time, also,
it’s that kind of woman. But here she gets blended in with this New York
spirit, the Lou Reed cool. She’s kind of cool, she’s a cool chick. She’s
sophisticated and beautiful and cool. There’s an ease about her.”

There were haircalf coats worn over leather sheath dresses and leather
leggings; patchwork shearling coats, leather and suede dresses, and
body-hugging metallic knit long-sleeved T-shirt dresses.

In an unusual look for Calvin Klein, handbags with chunky metal chains were
worn across the body; and large button detail and a stud-effect were not
dissimilar to the rock gothic, grunge on show at Alexander Wang. “It’s a
lot of confidence, strength,” summed up Costa.

Marc Jacobs wows crowd with eccentric elegance

American designer Marc Jacobs provided a dazzling finale to New York
Fashion Week on Thursday with a collection of severe but eccentric elegance
that followed cashmere cool from Ralph Lauren and urban eroticism from
Calvin Klein.

Jacobs invited film director Sofia Coppola, Blondie frontwoman Deborah
Harry and actress Christina Ricci to an intimate show staged to look like a
boudoir with a painted couch as a backdrop and hanging ropes.

The designer, considered perhaps the most innovative of his generation, was
reportedly inspired by Diana Vreeland, the late fashion editor, who was
also an American debutante and who trained once as a ballet dancer.

Models powered down the runway in black gloves to the elbow, A-line skirts
in floral or plastic pleats, tweed suits, twinsets, monochrome fur coats
while wearing dark lipstick and hair pulled back in top knots.

The global fashion jet-set will now decamp to Europe for fashion weeks
in London,
Milan and Paris. (Jennie Matthew and Brigitte Dusseau, AFP)

Photos: Vogue

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