Written and photographed by Baille Gelwicks.
Getting off the train at Penn Station I left reality behind for a place known as Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week. It’s a place where people are always dressed to the nines, it never rains, and natural disasters never hit… or so one would like to think. This full hitting blizzard didn’t stop these fashion mavens from showing up in their furs, cocktail dresses, and winter coats. With slush covering the sidewalks, wind blowing umbrellas inside-out, and snow and ice coming down, I trudged along in my suede shoes, denim shorts and ripped tights. Why? Because it couldn’t possibly snow during Fashion Week!
Now, inside at the tents I had a full schedule ahead of me. My first day included Carmen Marc Valvo, Noon by Noor, Nautica Men’s, Rebecca Minkoff, and Parkchoonmoo. It was the fur at Carmen Marc Valvo that instantly made this show memorable for me. I am definitely on a fur craze at the moment and his fuchia tipped fox fur coat was screaming my name. Noon by Noor was another great highlight for the first day. Deep, traditionally prep school colors of burgandy and navy flooded the runway. It was here that I first saw a trend that I would see on several other runways — knit ski caps.
Nautica Men’s was my first men’s fashion show and it definitely did not disappoint. Everything seen on the runway could be taken to the streets. The comfy knits and slim cut pants make it almost too hard to determine between preppy and hipster. Shall we call it prepster? Not wanting to head back out into the snow, I sat for five hours waiting for my last show of the night, Parkchoonmoo. With a DJ booth, cafe, and bar on hand, sitting for five hours wasn’t really that hard to do. Atfter the last show of the night everyone made their way outside again into a world where we were clearly not dressed for the occasion. Circle scarf now pulled up over top of my oh-so-fashionable top knot, photographers stood ready to take photos of a group of us crossing the street. Oh to be an on looker on a day like today.
Day two — the snow had passed and I’m up and going at 7:00 am to prepare for my interview with Ruffian. After walking past the correct trailer, I finally got to where I was going. No time was wasted as I met Walter and we were immediately shown to our interview with Brian Wolk and Claude Morais, the designers for Ruffian. I was allowed only two questions which I made sure were well thought out and hopefully obvious that I took my time to study them.
After seeing the past and current collections, Ruffian is definitely one of my new favorites. The juxtaposition between sweet and tough captures my style perfectly. On my agenda for the rest of the day was Marissa Webb, Song Jung Wan, Rafael Cennamo Couture and Christian Siriano. Cennamo and Siriano were definitely the two highlights of my day. Cennamo was my first ever couture collection. The detail was extraordinary. The effort that went into everything from the make-up to the design to the presentation itself made this show a must-see going forward. It was now time for Lisa and I to head over to Siriano’s offsite show location. After waiting outside for a good 30 minutes it all became worth it as we stepped into an empty warehouse with a runway backed by deep red velvet curtains and a gorgeous crystal chandelier, which was only made better by second row seats. The collection was absolutely regal. Black fur, silks, deep colors, gold tipped and brocade heels, braided hair pulled up to show off the neck and a slew of gold dresses was so awe-inspiring it left me with only one word to say, wow.