The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

New York is often thought of as the most magical place to spend Christmastime, which is a statement that definitely rings true. Despite the evident commercial undertone to all the festivity, the entire city seems to light up like a Christmas tree, which elicits the same response of its people - a brightness that is foreign during the rest of the year. But the magic of New York during the holidays is nothing more than an illusion of magic. The forced perfection of New York's decorations give the city a strangely, merry feeling rather than a natural, cozy one; the homeless were pushed off the streets and replaced by giant nutcrackers, an action that reflects the city's true intentions and priorities.

At this time of the year, I believe that we should not turn a blind eye to the sadness in the world in an effort to be merry, but instead make it a top priority to share the spirit of the season with those less fortunate. No matter one's religion, ethnicity, sexuality, race, gender, or circumstance, everyone deserves to feel the raw happiness and thankfulness of the holiday season, not some artificial representation of it. 

Wishing you all a happy holiday season.

The Perfect Practicality of Pre-Fall

Pre-fall is my favorite season. Although, when compared to the regular autumn and spring seasons, it most certainly lacks in theatrics, bold headlines, and all around attention-seeking, it is for those exact reasons that I appreciate pre-fall most. Just as couture represents fashion in its most indulgent, purest form, pre-fall is the epitome of the business part of fashion, as it exists as the most salable of all fashion seasons. The ideas woven into pre-fall collections aren't usually the most innovative or intellectual, and for that reason are normally looked at as more commercial than creative, but just think about the creativity that goes into concentrating big, abstract ideas into concrete, commercial clothes? So I may be giving designers the benefit of the doubt here (which I do rarely), but I believe that the process of watering down beautiful ideas for the sake of business is an artistically sacrificial one that deserves both recognition and appreciation. It is true that ideas are watered down for ready-to-wear (and clothes in general), but at least the grandness and attention that the major fashion weeks elicits makes up for the dullness of ideas, whereas pre-fall demands almost no attention and achieves the same level of thinned creativity. 

Pre-fall is done best when it explores already introduced ideas from the regular seasons; my favorite example this season being J.W. Anderson, the abstract and inflated of last season left undone in a concise, crisp way. Relative to the fantasy "girl" that a brand ultimately creates, couture is the deepest contents of her imagination, ready to wear exists as her wardrobe when she's feeling most confident in herself, and pre-fall and resort act as what she actually wears. 

J.W. Anderson.

Maison Margiela.



photos via Vogue Runway

The Birth, Death, and Resurrection of Fashion Shows

Fashion shows. Depending on who you are and where you're coming from, those very words can evoke vastly different images. From slow, prowling models elegantly and plainly making their way past members of the industry, to the empowered steps and stomps of the 90s, and, finally, to today's simple walk, not unusually offbeat to the music (and even more offbeat to the clothes.) Because fashion itself is a reflection of the times, it only makes sense for fashion shows to be as well; just as fashion is a medium for ideas to be expressed on to, fashion shows are the greater medium, even more space for ideas to be conveyed. And just as fashion's origins are strictly linked to practicality, so are that of the fashion show's.

What started out as simply an event for editors, critics, buyers, and illustrators to see the latest trends, more business than play, has become a fit label for the wonderfully-overblown spectacles of John Galliano, the chillingly-thought-provoking of Alexander McQueen, the social-norm-challenging of Rick Owens. The words "fashion show" equally describes the most extravagant and expensive of productions, and also those most straightforward and simple. While we all know what they supposedly look like, what passes as a fashion show today is becoming more and more amorphous.

 Fashion shows today aren't just technology-friendly, they're created for technology. Sometimes, these technology driven shows are a total miss - i.e., when a brand makes the clothes/setting solely to look good on a screen. But other times, albeit few and far between, technology is used in a way that is helpful to fashion. The most recent example of this was Gucci, recently a frequent, all-around "good example" under Alessandro Michele, which uploaded their Pre-Fall collection in a nice little presentation on Snapchat. It was convenient, easy, and true to all that is the Gucci Girl, which normally doesn't include technology. I hate the idea of other brands using the "Gucci Success Story," which is, I believe, part of the reason so many seasoned designers have just recently departed from their positions, but Gucci has offered one of the best combinations of fashion shows and technology since the initial, and now a bit old, live-stream video; the original merging of fashion and technology. Fashion shows will never be finished changing, but I think Alessandro Michele has achieved a significant change for the better.

Christian Dior.

Yves Saint Laurent.

John Galliano.

Alexander McQueen.

Screenshots from Gucci Pre-Fall on Snapchat.

Screenshots from Gucci Pre-Fall on Snapchat.