thestylelinenyfw

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J.CREW via instagram

Ah yes, J.Crew - Need I say more? Stepping out of what seems to be their usual “eclectic prep” aesthetic, it seems that J.Crew took this collection one step further… and definitely in the right direction! There was the usual use of embellishments and pattern play, toned down by the classic silhouette and distinctive structure that makes the J.Crew aesthetic so refined. But it seems that the accessories helped to redefine each look - Then again this is coming from a self-proclaimed shoe addict. However, there was a certain “edge" that I personally haven’t seen amongst past collections in their entirety and I for one already can’t wait for these beauties to hit the racks… 

- RACHEL SCHWARTZMANN 

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6 Humanizing Ways to Approach New York Fashion Week

In remembrance and reflection of the many events this week it’s important to remember the core of why we do what we do, and who we are as individuals but perhaps more importantly, who we are as a city. New York’s undeniable pull can sometimes lead us in every which way and yet, we somehow always find ourselves back to where we started: From experience, it is usually in a place of curiosity, passion and a frantic love affair with the city that never sleeps.

Fashion is engrained in this DNA - and because of the dynamic hub of creative people who’ve contributed their talents to making a truly bourgeoning industry. While the obvious influence of technology has changed the landscape of how we see this aspect of our lives (and more specifically, our response to fashion week), it paradoxically has cultivated connection like never before.

In the midst of the chaos of delivering creative content while juggling with actually trying to see the clothing for what it is, I’ve personally been trying to catch the quiet moments that truly make us feel connected to this wearable art. For example, I love catching moments of a designer’s (probably exhausted) production or PR team. I can imagine how gratifying it is to be able to take a step back, remove the headset and take in not only the collection, but their contributions to it’s reality. Earlier this week I had a chance to catch up with contemporary designer, Whitney Pozgay backstage before her show. As graceful and bubbly as ever, her sincerity and commitment to her craft mirrored her thoughtful and fun spring pieces. I even found my way into brothervellies debut presentation. I can’t say I know the designer Aurora James, or her team personally but I caught a glimpse at how elated she looked and it affected my outlook on her show.

For as beautiful as the clothing always is, eight seasons in I’m starting to notice how much more the genuine support and response from a designer’s community elevates a show’s experience. Enjoying (and even laughing at!) one’s self really never goes out of style. Other sources are even reaffirming this: mashablehq‘s recent article contends that this was the most inclusive season of fashion week yet. It’s exciting to see we’ve arrived at milestone signifying progress.

So as we continue keeping a watchful eye on what’s to come for SS16, I’ve developed made a short-list of what to consider for the rest of my fashion week experience. So from me to you…

Designing The Story: While we’re obviously there to see the clothing and the overall presentation don’t forget to look at the other elements: From set production to styling, there is so much more to the story than meets the eye… which only gives us that much more to appreciate.

Model Behavior: Enduring an emotional build-up before showtime is hardly a rarity amongst industry insiders. It’s important to consider that we are also on display in our behavior towards others no matter what end of the spectrum we’re on. While fashion week is a time of go go go, remember to stop and appreciate one another’s unique contributions and support. Empathy is the new black.

It Takes A Village: No matter an individual’s role in the show-going experience it’s comforting to know that fashion week cultivates community. People from all walks of life find themselves unified by a common love of fashion and appreciation for the many gifts the industry has to offer. That’s something that never goes out of style.

Cultural Considerations: It’s been interesting to see a shift in a return to values and conscious consideration of how garments and accessories are made. I applaud all of the smaller designers who have been able to implement sustainable practices in their business from the get-go - They are a testament to the fact that you can create beautiful products without compromise. Fashion has also began lending itself to social causes and in joining in these global conversations we’re proving that creativity counts.

Cultivate Connection: While Instagram may be beckoning it’s now easier than ever to have a digital dialogue translate into an offline setting. I’ve met and reconnected with many interesting people during accidental run-ins at shows - and as a result have created some really incredible friendships and collaboration. All things considered, It’s always nice to have someone to share and experience with.

Understand The Impact: At it’s core, this week is an incredible opportunity to drive awareness around the city’s bourgeoning talent. While at times we question our sanity during what feels like a non-stop week, we’re doing our part in fostering a venue for creative talent to be discovered and celebrated. In a greater sense we’re also helping fuel our city’s economy and local opportunities. There are so many culminating factors in the impact this industry has on New York in it’s entirety and in realizing this, we can only imagine what’s to come next season… and beyond.

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BEHIND THE SCENES: Inspiration boards + Look lineups 

1. Looks from WHIT NY’s latest collection {CFDA Market Day} 2. Look lineup from the Nanette Lepore SS14 runway show 3. Inspiration board from Timo Weiland {CFDA Market Day} 4. Inspiration board from Jonathan Simkhai {CFDA Market Day} 5. Inspiration board from WHIT NY {CFDA Market Day}

There’s something so incredibly rewarding about being able to get a sneak peak of the inspiration behind a designer’s collection. In an attempt to stay true to our storytelling roots, here are a few captures from the past week that showcase these elements. I had a chance to stop by the CFDA Incubator for Market Day, and truth be told became more intrigued by the inspiration boards rather than the garments themselves! There is something very special and intimate about understanding where a designer’s head is at before their ideas become materialized. This part of the process is often overlooked, and I for one think it is one of the most inspiring.

- RACHEL SCHWARTZMANN

Which of these boards inspire you the most?