NYFW Day 3: Brands look on the bright side
On the penultimate day of this week's New York Fashion Week calendar, vivid looks reigned supreme, as designers focused on joy and optimism.
Bibhu Mohapatra's spring/summer 2021 collection for his eponymous brand was inspired by 20th century Indian painter, Amrita Sher-Gil, whose paintings incorporate both a soft and acidic use of color. Following suit, the collection featured a number of dramatic dresses and skirts in rose, soft blue, black and acid green; skirts in cream and lemony yellow, and footwear in baby blue and fuchsia. The collection was showcased in a video presented on Runway360, featuring models wearing the SS21 pieces in a painter's studio.
"Amrita Shergil is one such change-maker who revolutionized and challenged the Indian art scene, albeit way ahead of her times," the brand said. "With her bold and daring approach towards her life and her artistic milieu she charted the path for the future generations of artists who pledged to continue her legacy of change and challenged the norm. [The] Bibhu Mohapatra spring 2021 collection is inspired by the works and life of Amrita Sher-Gil and her fundamentally Indian spirit."
Cinq à Sept
New York-based, French-chic brand Cinq à Sept chose its spring 2021 collection to pay homage to the beauty of nature, playing on the contrast between the brand's home in New York City and the wild great outdoors.
Dresses with tiers of ruffles and puff sleeves; satiny tops, pants and shorts in crimson, tan, white and deep blue; and a number of sets featuring Ikat floral and woodblock zebra prints were served up "as a reaction to the difficult times the world was facing," the brand said.
"The prints and colors for spring 2021 translate feelings of freedom and breeziness that we longed for during months of isolation. Fire corals, acid yellows, and peacock blue hues are direct results of wanting to return to the scenic outdoors. This season there is an appreciation for having the freedom to explore and take advantage of nature’s rich offerings of color and texture," it continued.
South African knitwear brand Maxhosa Africa, led by designer Laduma Ngxokolo, was yet another brand to focus on optimism in its spring/summer 2021 collection.
Entitled 'Ingumangaliso Imisebenzi Kathixo' or 'God's Work is Magical', the collection included a range of bright, intricately patterned knitwear tops, collared shirts, jackets, pants, skirts and dresses in lush pinks, yellows, purples and blues -- occasionally accompanied by a knit bucket hat, undone head wrap or balaclava. Presented in a streamed runway show format, models walked through a room decorated with vivid woven tapestries, throw pillows, rugs and furniture.
"This is the brightest collection I have made thus far," said Ngxokolo. "This collection aims to bring positivity and inject a positive sense of happiness into the world, going against the odds that have happened in 2020. We are trying to appeal to people and encourage them to be at their happiest."
After hosting her first runway show in September, New York City-based designer Sandy Liang presented her namesake brand's spring/summer 2021 collection with a fashion film, depicting different models sporting pieces in different parts of the city, while text of an ambiguous one-sided dialogue played across screen.
"What is this?" the dialogue reads, "Now, Now, you should change! Why? You're going to capture a Clow Card now, right Sakura?"
"I'm happy you understand how I feel! So, Sakura, go change! I also have hats for each outfit!"
Highlights of the collection include a variety of shirts and dresses featuring a large doll print, a loose cream trapeze dress, an oversized army green parka and a number of multi-colored, wide-collared fleece jackets.
The designer is set to open her premiere store in October.
Kim Shui, the New York City-based it-girl favorite sported by the likes of Kylie Jenner and Cardi B, presented her spring/summer 2021 collection in a film, featuring a mix of models and friends of the brand. Celebrating the women of New York City, the collection features slinky crop tops; strappy dresses; body-con numbers; and sheer blouses in highlighter green, embossed black, lacey nude as well as sumptuous animal prints splashed with warm orange tones.
"The Kim Shui woman is strong, bold, and independent–and this season, Shui chose to celebrate this woman in a more intimate and vulnerable way than ever before," the CFDA said.
"With her digital presentation, Shui opted to reveal her collection on models, muses, friends...the result is a beautiful tribute to the women that inspire Shui – real women facing real world problems like so many of us.
"For an industry that is built on a high glamour sensibility and a ultra-refined personas, Shui is breaking that wall down by fostering an inclusive environment that welcomes women from all walks of life. The emerging designer illustrates a bright light for the future of fashion."
Tomorrow marks the final day of the CFDA's NYFW calendar, opening with a presentation from Faith Connexion and closing with Christian Siriano.
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