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Do not ask who was at NYFW, but rather, who brought us there

Screenshot from FF Channel – YouTube

While some may brush off New York Fashion Week as a pointless waste of time filled with celebrities and froufrou designs, this biannual event is more than the fabrics on the models walking the runway. 

New York Fashion Week is one of the four major fashion weeks globally that has been running since 1943. This year’s fall/winter NYFW runway ran from Feb. 9 until Feb. 14, although it had its unofficial kickoff the week before, courtesy of Marc Jacobs, and featured 97 designers and brands. The biannual event is one of fashion’s most anticipated couture collections.

Not only does the event allow audiences to preview what is to come in the next season, but it also sets the stage for innovation for large and smaller designers alike.

With some of fashion’s most recognizable names, like Tom Ford and Calvin Klein, no longer presenting runway collections, it leaves room for newcomers to make their mark in the industry.

Ten designers debuted on the New York runway, including Paris-based designer Ludovic de Saint Sernin.

Androgyny is a huge part of de Saint Sermin’s brand. His latest collection was inspired by the works of controversial photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. 

Mapplethorpe’s provocative photography showcased New York’s gay BDSM scene in the 80s and has faced obscenity charges.

“Robert’s work allowed me to be free,” de Saint Sernin told Hypebeast. “I want this collection to provide that feeling for others, too.”

The order in which the outfits came out started with neutral tones and soft floral elegance. Eventually, it shifted towards the more lustful designs featuring leather and deep red tones, telling the story of exploring one’s sexuality.

In his latest collection, American designer Thom Browne knew how to modernize his brand while staying true to it.

Unsurprisingly, he closed out New York Fashion Week in a memorable way. His latest collection was inspired by one of his favorite Edgar Allen Poe poems, “The Raven.” The famous work concerns a man who goes mad and is overwhelmed with grief following the loss of his love.

Browne transformed the runway into an eerie, mysterious forest with a 30-foot-long puffer coat resembling a large tree. The pieces shown might remind some of Audrey Hepburn’s horse race look in the film, “My Fair Lady.”

Actress Marie Croon amped up the drama as she recited a modified version of the poem throughout the show.

“As one story comes to an end, another begins,” Croon narrated. “The beguiling golden bug emerges cloaked in a gold jacquard cape with debossed roses and black moiré intarsia ravens.”

Despite the macabre influences, the show contained passionate expressions of love.

At the end of the show, Browne ran out with a giant heart-shaped box presumably filled with chocolates for his lover, British museum curator Andrew Bolton. Browne’s new collection ended fashion week and, by extension, Valentine’s Day on a romantic note.

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