Although they were still well within New York City limits, guests abandoned a united sense of civilization while on a distant and difficult trek to the Alexander Wang Fall/Winter 2014 collection presentation during New York Fashion Week. Though the host’s location (a venue called Duggal Greenhouse in the non-gentrified Brooklyn Navy Yard) may have evoked a feeling of isolated survival, it was Wang who removed editors and the fashion elite from the bustle of what many call their comfort zone.
“Extreme conditions and survival” were the inspirations behind this season’s collection. For Wang, who recently presented his sophomore line as Balenciaga’s creative director during Paris Fashion Week, the theme summoned outdoor endurance with an urban utilitarian twist, referencing the styling of garb found on hunters and mountain climbers.
But don’t let that fool you. These bait-and-tackle restraints were intended for an entirely different type of environmental force. Where life in an urban metropolis meant clawing harsh pavement and battling a world with smartphones in lieu of machetes.
While this winter brings blasts and blizzards of snow against the East Coast, it’s quite fathomable to visualize the extreme conditions this collection could face. Where all you truly focus on are two essentials: a solid coat and functional boots. And Alexander Wang delivered just that, plus much much more.
From suede puffers and warm shearling to silken windbreakers, outerwear was an obvious major priority throughout the collection, with strong sartorial additions to safeguard the wearer from some serious natural elements – and stylish faux pas. However, it wasn’t only the outerwear putting up a fight against Mother Nature, but woven throughout the collection were also neat pullovers, leather collared dickies and silk cravats.
For the final statement, the guests (and those who attended via the live feed online) witnessed the genius of thermal-activated leather clothes (including laser-cut paisley prints and high-heeled boots) change colors from black to blues, yellows or purples. Best yet? This chameleon-like marvel was worn by major supermodels, such as Victoria’s Secret angel Karlie Kloss.
Wang, who isn’t a newbie to athletic influences, understands one component designers must: In order to create an entire collection, he must encompass not only the theme but also an entirely wearable aesthetic-which was something mastered early on in his street-wear days. With this fall/winter lineup, the 30-year-old designer has mastered textile innovation while maintaining a minimalist appearance, all while garnering high praise from the fashion industry this season.