The Top 10 SS15 Collections From New York Fashion Week (Runway Review)

Fashion month as we know it is over and I thought it would be the perfect time to discuss or rather ‘justify’ my top 10 collections from each fashion week city.  Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week commenced in the metropolitan city of New York fondly known as ‘Concrete Jungle’ because as the term denotes, everything is hard core and life is defined by intense competition. Fashion in this case is no exception. New York Fashion Week Spring Summer 2015 is known to host the most collections of all the fashion week cities, which makes it an environment of endless creativity and variety. I think my selection reflects my love and appreciation for NYFW’s rich diversity of design.

Donna Karan continues to perplex my cerebrum with her keen sense of ‘athleisure’. The collection entitled ‘New York Nation’ ruminates Donna’s young, sporty and fresh ideals that puts to death any stereotypes associated with age in fashion. Sporty fabrics like neoprene, mesh, and organza played up flared skirts, bomber jackets, over-sized coats and copious dress forms. Softer fabrics were canvases for striped, geometric and tribal prints almost always mixed and matched together in outfits. Some skirt on skirt action with flared minis being paired with mid-calf loose pencil skirts was the signature trend of the collection encapsulating traditional athletic hues like warm reds, classic blues and canary yellow. Accessorized with the ever trending platform sneakers and sandals with blended chokers, the collection incorporated all aspects of urban street style that felt relevant at the moment.

2. Porsche Designs
Porsche Designs kept things well within the lines of its name, ‘Porsche’. There was no grand use of typical spring colours, which I don’t believe anyone truly missed. Deep plunging necklines that journeyed along the torso were a delightful catch on some pieces, while leather was intricately used to sculpt dresses and tops to a most impeccable fit full of edge. The designs were under strong Japanese influence with kimono style belts being major staples among the womenswear. The menswear took a more relaxed turn but complimented every look from the womenswear collection almost perfectly. Clean, chic and edgy was the name of the game and it was embedded with luxury.

3. Oscar De La Renta
The earth stopped spinning the day Oscar’s Spring Summer 2015 collection hit the runway; it’s the only explanation for the ethereal brilliance cascading the room in the form of his designs. Timeless fabrics such as silk faille and patterns like gingham and floral lace worked well in isolation and juxtaposed to create exceptionally flattering feminine silhouettes. The colours were all easy going and youthful. Hues like baby pink, baby blue and yellow green made the collection feel garden ready while black and whites gave red carpet appeal. Though there was nothing significantly unfamiliar about each design that incorporated the exhaustive cropped top trend, everything still felt like a euphoric blend of beauty and sophistication.

4. Thom Browne
Fashion innovation was in grave drought this season. So when Thom Browne unleashed his bewitching collection of savage whimsy at fashion week it was as if we were all thrown into the rabbit hole from ‘Alice in Wonderland’. Not lost, but completely enchanted. Thom Browne became the God of textures, and the master of well-done extravagance. Clash-friendly prints and candy colours were the primary ingredients of well-tailored power suits and floral… Alas! Floral prints were finally made ‘ground breaking’. It was as if Fleet Street approvingly began flourishing after the death of Sweeney Todd. Mad hats were everywhere polishing the ego of every outfit. Some were wired to resemble handbags while others were a ‘mini me’ reflection of dresses and suits (squint your eyes and observe them closely). Every single piece from each outfit could choose to divorce the other and still be worn as strong separates at which point the case was made very clear… You either go Browne or go home.

5. Alexander Wang
Alexander’s SS15 collection was pure futuristic athleticism. Figure hugging tennis dresses made from knit polyester exhibited high graphic features in neon pigments. The silk figure-less maxi dresses with mesh accents were surprisingly sporty but could still be styled very formal. Textured and laser cut leather embossed in space age constructions of netted bomber jackets, bandage tops and flared mini dresses was a fetching catch. Tailored trousers and well cut blazers infused tiny doses of sophistication with a sense of richness reminding us all of what makes Alexander Wang so very special.

6. Ralph Lauren
Ralph Lauren could not be any more signature with this collection. There was nothing new under the sun here but the future was still so bright with exciting jewel tones like amethyst, citrine, tangerine tango and pink. Cargo pants were ablaze for the Safari themed collection and so were chic shirts and bright colored trench coats that proved a bold but stylish gesture. Shiny silks and charmeuse in various shades of earthy neutrals made for sight appeasing jumpsuits, and great mixed colour combos.The stunner was the finale shirt dress gown that moved gracefully with the air. The bejeweled statement accessories were a fine kiss of elegance that made every day looks equally compatible with the night.

7. Custo Barcelona
Less was a lot more for Custo Barcelona who may have accomplished the perfect ‘island ready’ Spring Summer collection. The collection was an easy, breezy, flow of eclecticism. Dynamic prints were everywhere and often paired with lace and other light fabrics like chiffon, satin, mesh and cotton. Models strutted in beachy ensembles like monokinis, sassy bikinis and netted cover ups with hip revealing cutouts. Flirty mini dresses, jacquard two piece outfits and slinky rompers with metallic finishes were a plague but a good one.  Menswear was as its chicest with lots of colourful slacks and vibrant printed vests paired with cardigans giving sports wear a new type of edge.

8. Rosie Assoulin
Voluminous skirts, acute lines of construction and a striking mixture of bright and earthy hues were the crowning elements of Rosie’s SS15 lookbook. Rosie definitely stayed true to her love for minimalism and her keen sense of couture, creating exaggerated but still very feminine silhouettes. The accessories were just as unusual and flattering as each outfit with wide-brimmed straw hats and ceramic handbags resembling Moroccan pottery lifting each garment to a place of sheer uniqueness.

9. Altuzarra
This collection was a creeper. It began with chic conservative silhouettes patterned with gingham, pencil skirts with thigh high slits and lots of shirts. There was a smell of retro reminiscence in the air especially after two outfits almost perfectly mimicked Aubrey Hepburn’s classic shirt and high waist leggings ensemble came down the runway looking startlingly new and fresh. The collection soon eased its way into alluring uses of velvet and asymmetrical stripes , leather laser cut vests and skirts but things soon got dark and sensual with all black combos with a bit of ‘sheer’ drama. When we thought Joseph was through with the mystery he finished off with flirty floral maxi dresses of deep plunging necklines and ruffles creating a sort of water rippling effect. The collection was swooning with diversity and took everyone on an exhilarating ride.

10. Rodarte
If you don’t get fashion then Rodarte’s SS15 collection would be equally as hard to understand. The collection began with a haute couture type of sophistication that then gradually evolved into artful haute couture. In the beginning ruffles were everywhere, adorning off the shoulder blouses and sheer shirts with skin tight skinny jeans and thigh high laced up half-boot heels. The over-sized leather and net embellished barn jackets were a recurring thrill throughout the collection that gave a boyish edge to just about every piece it was paired with. Soon the collection ushered into the realm of oceanic couture with dresses that practically transformed models into sea nymphs. The designs incorporated mesh and fishnets, shiny silks and light chiffon, with accents of sequence and iridescence. The cuts at the hem of dresses were made to resemble the sea bed’s exotic corals and sea weeds, all of which were aesthetically pleasing to the curious eye. The presentation and collection were strong, new and a collection that could provoke a lot of thought.

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