Fashion Week

New York Fashion Week insider blog - from frow to backstage and everything inbetween

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Stylist's fashion and beauty teams are posting updates from the shows, frows and parties at New York Fashion Week...

MARC JACOBS PLAYS OUT NYFW IN STYLE

Ever the showman, Marc Jacobs brought the house down on New York Fashion Week like only he can.

Ziegfeld Theatre was the setting and old Hollywood was the theme. Show-goers were handed drinks and popcorn while a swing band played in the models, who made their red carpet entrance like they were the stars of a 1950s box office hit. 

As well as the kind of lavish gowns you'd expect in such a setting, Jacobs played heavily on the Americana theme we've seen throughout NYFW, glitzing it up with sequins galore and presenting ornate cowboy boots in a patent red, white and blue. 

Unexpected names in the show were singer Beth Ditto and actress Emily Ratajkowski, who walked alongside a cast of big-name Supers including Kendall Jenner, Bella Hadid, Adriana Lima and Joan Smalls. Bette Midler and Winona Ryder were among the surprise guests on the frow.

What the A-listers are wearing at New York Fashion Week

CALVIN KLEIN

Mel: What the hell is that?
Cher: A dress.
Mel: Says who?
Cher: Calvin Klein.

Calvin Klein, the home of the ambiguous slip dress, was in its element this season, with creative director Francisco Costa digging deep into the label's '90s roots and recasting its minimal slips in shiny satin and falling straps - ticking the trend boxes for SS16 pyjama dressing and exposed shoulders.

The floral print obsession was evident too, in a dark, blurry motif that appeared on everything from coats to flatform pumps.

RALPH LAUREN WOOS THE YACHTING SET

Flattering was the key word at Ralph Lauren where red, white and blue was worked into chic Riviera theme.

Block colour wide-legged trousers and silky skirts were teamed with classic stripes and soft jumpers knotted around the waist or shoulders. Oh, and collars were popped.

A solid geometric print added a splash of yellow on bags, shirts and coats, while a navy silk jumpsuit provided one of the most wearable and drool-worthy nods to pyjama dressing yet.

MICHAEL KORS

If any city can help floral shed its twee image, it's New York.

Flower power has been abundant on the runways, but it's not the fun '70s kind or the fade-away tea dress kind, these blooms are, well, not very flowery.

It was bold florals that set the tone at Michael Kors. The collection was proud and timeless, with deep red poppy prints and an all-seasons black coat with floral applique to fall in love with. 

*SHANNON'S BEAUTY NOTES FROM MICHAEL KORS*

Sun-kissed skin, shimmery eyelids and glossy lips were on the agenda backstage - aka the quintessential Michael Kors look. If you invest in any Kors make-up product, make it the Bronze Powder. Dick Page used it with abandon to offset the lids and lips.

Hair was matte and expertly windswept, thanks to stylist Orlando Pita and lashings of dry shampoo.

DKNY

Former Public School designers Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne showed their debut collection for DKNY since Donna Karan left after 31 years at the helm. Sporty vibes and colour was out, kooky tailoring in blacks, whites and greys were in. New York's famous skyline was heavily referenced - appearing in full-length prints on some dresses.

RODARTE

Whether it's a swish dinner date or simply tackling the daily commute, you can always bring out your inner princess with a fancy hair adornment, a la Rodarte SS16.

WEDDING DRESS INSPO AT MARCHESA

One for the Pinterest board...

HUGO BOSS

Jason Wu continued New York's love affair with the shoulder with signature HB precision. Perfectly structured navy dresses offered almost dangerously low off-the-shoulder necklines, while suit-inspired pieces were floaty and fresh for spring. Bright blocks of colour showed up in day-to-night dresses with pretty pleated skirts.

SWEETSHOP COLOURS AT J-CREW

A fun, flirty, all-American vibe this time around for J-Crew, who, like many other designers, have "gone back to their roots" this Fashion Week. Signature denims, bright sweetshop pastels and relaxed gingham were presented in a rustic, farmyard setting.

YEEZY SEASON 2

It's difficult to tell Kanye West's SS16 'homeless chic' offering apart from his winter one but his distinctively choreographed shows and unusual look are at least burning themselves into our collective conscious.

He upset a few people with the late announcement of his show, bumping one irate designer from her slot but needs must. Once again choreographed with a military theme by Vanessa Beecroft, the models - divided by their skin tone and dressed accordingly - shuffled out in front of a stellar front row cast (naturally) 40 minutes after showtime was due to begin.

The likes of Sneaker News and Footwear News (real titles) were most excited about a new lines of Adidas Yeezy Boost 750. Apparently there's a new 750 in "light plum suede" with "semi-translucent white outsole".

AIR-KISSING IS OUT AT VERA WANG

The designer gives her front row guest Rita Ora a proper bear hug after the show, which had a Belle de Jour (Catherine Deneuve, not Billie Piper) meets Las Vegas theme.

INSIDER BITES

Where the fash pack are eating:

  • Brunch at The Standard Grill on Washington Street - perfect in the sunshine. Mimosas essential 
  • Dinner at Navy on Sullivan Street - Utterly chic and dishes have the most delicious and unexpected flavours
  • Cocktails on the roof at Hotel Americano - the best frozen margaritas in town AND they have a pool.

SHADES GO FUN

Painted neon brows and rainbow sunnies spell summer at Iijin.

THE DRESS THAT SPEAKS FOR A GENERATION

Spotted backstage at Nanette Lepore.

FALLING FOR RIBBONS AT OSCAR DE LA RENTA

EYECATCHING STATEMENT CLUTCH

Spotted at Alice + Olivia by Stacey Bendet.

GOOD GOWN GAME

From Michael Costello.

SERENA WILLIAMS SIGNATURE STATEMENT BY HSN

She's a 21-time Grand Slam winner - and now a fashion star.

Serena Williams debuted her HSN line at New York Fashion Week on Tuesday night with the legendary Anna Wintour and Williams' rumoured boyfriend Drake sat front and centre as his tracks played at the show.

Fringing was big in the collection, appearing in leather and suede in dress form, on skirts and on jackets. Williams even took her bow in a dramatic fringed number...

See more stars on the front rows

COACH

Luxury leather brand Coach marked its 75th anniversary with its first ever ready-to-wear runway show in a dedicated pop up structure on the high line. The clothes had a cowgirl and prairie vibe, with a “surf, skate and punk attitude.” With Givenchy also showing by the river in a specially produced venue, it feels like New York Fashion Week is really settling into its new stride.

Victor Luis, Coach's CEO explained, “Our main business has been and always will be, of course, leather goods and accessories, but the ready-to-wear provides a context for the handbags. It helps to bring to life the Coach girl and the Coach woman, and who she is and what her life is like.”

ADORABLE DENIM SHOES AT ALL SAINTS

*SHANNON'S BEAUTY NOTES FROM BADGLEY MISCHKA*

Backstage at Badgley Mischka, Tom Pecheux used MAC to create a glamorous yet fresh look inspired by the glamour of Buenos Aires. He gave skin a luminous and youthful glow with MAC's new strobe creams, which we're pleased to hear will launch next year.

LADY GAGA'S STYLIST DEBUTS AT NYFW

And there wasn't a meat dress in sight. 

Brandon Maxwell may be the stylist behind one of music's most outrageous dressers, but his debut collection was a lesson in timeless elegance, showcasing the kind of outfits that may well justify the price tags...

JUMPER ENVY AT RAG & BONE

Held at a cool Brooklyn venue that served teeny burgers and mini fries (thank you, Rag & Bone) we wanted to be that girl.

Everything on the runway was killer - from the messy up-dos and massive hoop earrings with a twist to the bright chunky knits with utility pockets.

*SHANNON'S BEAUTY NOTES AT 3.1 PHILLIP LIM*

This is not a drill. Hair nets are cool. But not as you know them.

Backstage at 3.1 Phillip Lim, hairstylist Paul Hanlon was hard at work conjuring up a hairstyle worthy of the designer's 10th anniversary show.

This season's model is “a rebelling teenager,” with edgy, ruffled texture hair adorned with a makeshift hair band created from “scraps of tulle she could have just found on the street.”

I'm not sure what streets Hanlon has been walking down, but I'm drawn to the look all the same. For me, the tulle fabric gives the look a kind of feminine, ‘Sunday Best’ hat vibe, toughened with a bedraggled day-old bun that has fallen loose into a half ponytail at the nape of the neck.

The make-up was again subtle (NY seems to be observing a make-up amnesty) but Diane Kendal played with the liner on the eyes, using NARS Paint Pot in Solomon Islands to draw half an eye of liner on the top and the other half of liner on the bottom. But when the eye is shut, the lines align: genius.

The nails were another marvel. Madeline Poole painted the models' nails with an unusual brown tone (All Bark by Sally Hansen) and layered with tiny stripes of silver tape in different widths to “give it a bit of a varsity vibe.” I can't help but think this is too fiddly for my cumbersome hands to manage, but I'm told with a pair of cuticle nippers, getting a tidy finish is a doddle.

“Stop and smell the flowers” was the theme at Phillip Lim for his 10th anniversary collection, where clothes were silky and voluminous or structural, with wistful floral prints...

A COLOUR EXPLOSION AT REEM ACRA

ALL THE PINKS AT CAROLINA HERRERA

SHINY, SHINY SKIRT AT KAREN WALKER

DRESS ENVY AT ZAC POSEN

Posen said of his spring/summer 16 collection, “The idea is to blend couture techniques into the daywear and in turn, bring the daywear comfort into after-dark dressing.”

JEREMY SCOTT

Sixties bubblegum Barbies-meet-Barbarellas swanned down the Jeremy Scott runway in plastic ankle boots, plastic nails, plastic bags, plastic bangles...you get the idea.

Beauty was high maintenance and high-impact, with exaggerated fluro orange lips, graphic drawn-on eyelashes and huge bombshell bouffant wigs.

The Moschino creative director's offering was typically brash and cartoon-esque with an abundance of covetable showpieces...

TOMMY HILFIGER

A breezy 'Island Fever' catwalk show from Tommy Hilfiger, where models shimmied down a boardwalk catwalk set above a makeshift beach in bright, colourful stripes, faded denim and '70s florals. Crochet, embroidery and mesh gave the collection texture, while brash logo jumpers and vests are set to be street style heroes. As well as the likes of Gigi Hadid and Binx Walton, Hailey Baldwin, daughter of Hollywood acting royalty Stephen, made a cameo on the runway...

NICOPANDA

A gloriously glittery beauty moment at Nicola Formichetti's streetstyle line...

SHANNON RECREATES PUBLIC SCHOOL'S POWER BRAID

This look is glossy and looks great on mid-lengths. Watch the step-by-step backstage to bathroom tutorial here

Nexxus New York: exactly what all salons should look like

A quick break between shows meant I had a chance to nip to the new Nexxus salon that opened earlier this year in the trendy district of TriBeCa.

The salon's haircare brand is headed up by expert trichologist and stylist Kevin Mancuso and their salon is quite frankly amazing. Why? I'll give you three reasons.

Firstly, there's the Retail Therapee wall, a collection of edible and not so edible treats to take away after your visit. I picked up ever-handy kirby grips, a finishing spray and a Karlie's Kookie.

And don't get me started on the sinks. Gone are the days of aching necks and water dripping down the back of your neck. Here, the seats are more like beds (yes, beds!) that fully recline making the whole situation far more comfortable. Just try not to fall asleep at the backwash.

But reason number three and perhaps the piece de resistance is the magic mirror. Or interactive mirror to use its official title.

At the start of every visit to the salon, Kevin or a member of his team will stand you in front of the mirror to analyse the condition of your hair. The mirror talks you through the different factors of hair condition and helps assess the damage (Kevin could basically count every single stroke of a straightener and curl of a tong I'd subjected my hair to). Then they log the product regime they plan to use on you in the blow dry that follows so you feel fully educated on what your hair lacks.

DIANE VON FURSTENBERG

DVF had a stella star-filled show with Gigi Hadid, Karlie Kloss, Kendall Jenner and Lindsey Wixson all walking. Diane herself did a full lap of the catwalk as her bow - encouraging the crowd to whoop and shout and generally being fabulous.

*SHANNON'S BEAUTY NOTES AT DVF*

At last, some make-up that wasn't about just the natural look! Pat McGrath created a two-toned teal and peacock blue eye at Diane von Furstenberg.

The hair, created by Orlando Pita for Tresemme, was inspired by Diane herself in the '70s. So it was big, blown-out curls flanked with custom-made floral hair accessories. Diane was holidaying in Ibiza with Sarah Jessica Parker no less when she came across a man creating floral headbands and she knew she had to have him make the same sort of accessory for her show. She put him in touch with Orlando and the pair worked on these bespoke hair slides that adorned each of the models' heads.

OPENING CEREMONY

A stage set with greenery and Art Deco lamp shades, Opening Ceremony used dancers to show some of the looks. With Alexa Chung and Kylie Jenner watching, they then did a finale that included an impromptu dance show...

PRABAL GURUNG

Prabal Gurung dedicated his show to Nepal, which is where the designer has said is “roots” are. A group of chanting monks opened his show, while '90s catwalk stars Maggie Riser and Frankie Rayder both walked.

DEREK LAM

Yellow and pink eyeshadow manages to look elegant at Derek Lam. We're game...

A CONTOURING BACKLASH?

The ubiquitous make-up technique was parodied at Hood By Air, where blending was banned - to dramatic effect.

More: Kookiest looks of the day at NYFW

VICTORIA BECKHAM

Winning our hearts with the Half Moon bag and surfer prints - see all the looks from her spring/summer collection here

See more celebrities at the shows

BEHIND THE SCENES AT VICTORIA BECKHAM

Our four favourite things backstage at VB:

1. Chocolate bagels

For breakfast.

2. Super facials

Models were treated to Sunday Riley flash facials backstage at the show and the brand put their newest creations to work - the Sunday Riley PRO range. This collection consists of a sensitive-skin-friendly cleansing water, a flower acid toner and a gel mist, which is basically dewy, supermodel skin in a bottle. The products will be used solely backstage this season and next but I'm promised that they'll be available to buy by May 2016.

3. The ceiling

Held in one of the Financial District's grandest venues, Cipriani, the show space features the most opulent of painted ceilings. A view worth the neck-ache.

4. Bathroom envy

What wonders must lie beyond this door...

See all the looks from the show

ALEXANDER WANG

“Hitting the reset button” was the theme of Wang's SS16 collection - also his label's 10th anniversary show. Following the news he will be leaving his role as creative director at Balenciaga, the designer returned to the unfussy vision that made his name. 

Wearable street chic came in the form of mesh vests and silky gowns worn with bombers and big coats, slouchy trousers and pyjama tops and plenty of colourful leather motorbike jackets.

On the front row...

See more VIPs at Alexander Wang's 10th anniversary show

*SHANNON'S ALEXANDER WANG BEAUTY NOTES*

It was all about individualism at Alexander Wang as hair aficionado Guido Palau embraced the girls' natural hair texture and treated it to a little spritz of Redken's Windblown - the king of the texture sprays.

For make-up - well, we say make-up - Diane Kendal treated skin to a dose of NARSskin Luminous Moisture Cream and that was it. Literally it. But being only a few days in to fashion month, before exhaustion has had its aggressive way with the models' skin, it's a treatment she can get away with.

More: Lady Gaga leads the Alexander Wang frow VIPS

TIME TO SHOW SOME SHOULDER

It’s no mean feat to dress for the warm weather while adhering to the office dress code and it can be almost as tricky to find on-trend items and outfits that feel cool in the summer heat, so there’s an appealing ease about the off the shoulder trend.

As well as popping up across NYFW street style, it appears on some of the most elegant daywear for the new season, from pretty party dresses to loose-fitting styles with longer sleeves.

Han Chong, Creative Director of Self-Portrait, which showed at NYFW on Saturday morning, explained, “Off the shoulder styles are great as you can show a little flesh without being to provocative as it is simply the shoulders and back on a woman, which is sexy but subtle”.

  • For office to evening, add a tailored sleeveless jacket, a slick, structured leather handbag and a pair of smart sandals or heels
  • For weekends and sunny holidays, take inspiration from '70s-inspired bohemian styles and wear with Grecian-style sandals and a fringed jacket or suede saddlebag.
  • Cropped off-the-shoulder styles look great with a high-waisted midi skirt or culottes, heels and an up-do for summer events. Kitty McGee

HERVE LEGER

We love the beautiful flyaway braid Orlando Pita created backstage at Herve Leger...

GIVENCHY

Absolutely epic.

The finale saw Joan Smalls, Raquel Zimmermann and a bleach-browed Kendall Jenner walk to a rendition of Ave Maria.

It had the A-list guests and even a couple of catwalk stumbles to add to the drama.

But it was the slinky gowns and Givenchy's signature face jewels that stole the show...

KATE SPADE

Covent Garden, eat your heart out.

Kate Spade presented her SS16 collection in an aromatic flower market, filled with 30,000 sumptuous blooms. The models were dressed in the designer's archetypal ladylike chic, but it was the playful bags that won our hearts...

The handbags, as ever, are a sight to behold:

RALPH LAUREN POLO

A beautiful roof top presentation at the McKittrick Hotel, with a cameo from Brooklyn Beckham and Selena Gomez.

More: Stars at NYFW shows and parties

CHROMAT

It was back to the future for Becca McCharen's architectural label.

Alongside structural, wearable sportswear, we were presented with a dress that reacts to your feelings and bras with built-in coolers. Find out more here

Packing for the Big Apple

Executive Fashion Director Kitty McGee is using her liquids allowance wisely...

Pictures: Taken with the Sony Xperia Z5. Additional images: Getty, Rex Features

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