As New York fashion week approaches its climax, it is inevitable that memories of earlier shows come back to us. We’ve seen designers focus on the shoulders. They have draped, sliced and decorated around fashion’s new favorite body part. Perhaps a metaphor for easing out the tension there. We’ve also noticed the easy, relaxed vibe of the clothes. It seems a memo must have been passed around the designers to deliver relatable wears for consumers.

Following this ongoing trend is Vera Wang. She might be best known for bridal wear, but the clothes she showed was the complete opposite of her bread and butter. She said it herself: “black, black, black”. The first look out was a corseted off-shoulder jacket worn with structured hot pants, anchored by black boots. That sense of darkness carried on through the collection, with the only Ray of light being the white georgette tops and pearl-embellished skirts.

Stuart Vevers collection for Coach 1941 was also somewhat dark, but it’s was dark in a rebellious sense. Studded and fringed leather/denim jackets were worn over sheer floral dresses trimmed with black lace. The collection made for a girl-gang movement.

Kate and Laura Mulleavy have always presented clothes based on dark glamour for Rodarte. It is very medieval, a mixture of hard and soft: studded leathers mixed with silk chiffon, heart-shaped yokes that can double as body armor, and airy dresses you can picture only fictional characters like the Khaleesi wear. Good fashion should be able to transport your mind, and the Mulleavy sisters do it over and over again.

Bringing in light was Tory Burch. According to her, she was in a mood for nostalgia. She maintained her bohemian-American aesthetic: beaded prairie skirts, batik-printed cotton twill, and nautical sweaters, all reminiscent of the sixties.

Fashion Bloggers favorite Rosie Assoulin presented her idea of beach wear. It still featured Assoulin signatures like ruffled/tiered tops, unexpected proportions, and otherworldly volumes.

Dennis Basso presented ethereal dresses – in neutral colors such as dove gray, camel, white, black and champagne – inspired by the “modern world voyager”.

At Reem Acra, it was evening wear galore, but the difference was in the fact that she presented them as separates which seemed a bit eighties-inflected. The few gowns she presented were signature Acra.

Monique Lhuillier revisited her beginnings as a designer. She modernized her offering by presenting shorter hemlines, and using a palette of baby pink, rose gold, and New York’s favorite color, black.

Lady Gaga and Naomi Campbell gave a standing ovation after Brandon Maxwell‘s show. He ditched drama in favor of clean lines, sharp tailoring, and sexy dresses.

Sally LaPointe does evening wear, but with an edge. The edge this season came in the form of corsets that shielded the bodice but exposed the bust, or pants that were fronted with lace-up details. Sequins and feathers also made a statement.

Yigal Azroüel was inspired by Africa, a continent he called “the heritage of humanity”. The embroidered and intricate stitching on coats and jackets were very reminiscent of Valentino, but the simpler designs were more true to his vocabulary.

Leave it to Narciso Rodriguez to be the calm to the New York storm. He delivered a serene and calm collection doing what he knows best: architectural seaming, bias draping, and the introduction of hardware as embellishments.

All images courtesy Vogue Runway.

Author: Kayito Nwokedi