The Big Apple goes full-on Second World War-era espionage for Fall 2019.
New York is only the first of the “Big Four” Fashion Weeks and it’s already brought big news for the season ahead. It opened with Tom Ford’s bullseye trouser silhouette of the season: roomy, high-waisted, and ankle-revealing. It ended with Marc Jacobs bringing the look full circle, giving it the darker, abstract interpretation that only this label can deliver.
Headline number one is the impressive number of labels that either went all-out eco friendly or took commendable steps toward going greener. Tom Ford, Kenzo, and Monique Lhuillier were among the designers to join the Faux Fur club. The latter presented nearly identical faux fur options alongside their signature traditional furs in an experiment to see which will sell better commercially. Dennis Basso, Jason Wu, and 3.1 Phillip Lim also incorporated faux fur, with the last doing away with exotic skins, too, following talks with the Humane Society. This cascade signals a sea change within the industry as cruelty-free collections increasingly become the new norm for luxury fashion.
In other trend news, there is clearly something in the air when it comes to shimmery, high-gloss materials that have a new-age sheen to them. (See Badgley Mischka and Christian Siriano, for starters.) Likewise, monochrome had a powerful presence as always in Manhattan, but this season, it was gray that seemed truly revolutionary. A notable number of labels closed out their shows with “Gray Finales” that were, more often than not, positively mystical. High-low “mullet” hemlines, statement pops of glowing cranberry hues, and trippy psychedelic prints supplied other major currents.
Abundant olive drab was just one contributing factor to another emerging theme: a fascination with 1940s silhouettes in general, and World War II era elements specifically. Zimmermann went so far as to draw inspiration from Nancy Wake, the French Resistance secret agent nicknamed “The White Mouse” for her ability to elude capture by the Gestapo. Collectively, the runways offered up plenty of outfits guaranteed to fire the imagination of anyone who’d like to channel their inner wartime spy, come autumn, to say nothing of their inner femme fatale.