New York Fashion Week Report. Meet Nancy, Our Bryant Park Reporter
It’s New York Fashion Week and there are still things going on. While LA-Story will post some summaries of key interesting shows after the Emmy week events, we have managed to snag writer Nancy Lichtenstein and friends who happened to get invited to many shows and will be filing reports giving you the latest 411 on what’s hot and happening in the shows she has seen.
Of course, it’s really important for any fashion obsessed person to wonder just one should wear to Bryant Park. Nancy gives us the “down low” on what it’s like to attend the New York Fashion Week for the first time!
The Fashionista’s Guide to Attending New York Fashion Week — for the first time!
My first day ever of Fashion Week started in a panic, as I woke up to a closet full of fall clothes I’d purchased and nothing suitable for the 90 degree late summer day I was facing (Stevie had warned me about this but I failed to take her advice). I am an avid fashion spectator, not an insider, and I haven’t been to a live fashion show since Bloomingdale’s Young Juniors in the 80’s, so I had no idea what to expect. I eventually calmed myself down by realizing that absolutely no one there would be looking at me.
I settled on a brown print wrap dress from Nordstrom (Classiques Entier), knee-high brown Cole Haan boots, Chanel bag and earrings, and a vintage circle necklace–not the most summery of looks, but I figured it would be bearable as we’d be indoors in air conditioning most of the time. (I would turn out to be sorely mistaken about this, but literally running around the city in 90 degree weather should do wonders for my weight-loss program. Now I understand why everyone who attends Fashion Week says it’s so tiring!)
I met up with Gina Muccino (who earned her place at my side by being the only person I know with a closet full of D&G–I figured she’d lend me some credibility) at the Signette party and private sale downtown at University Place. Signette is a contemporary dress collection designed by Aysha Said, who grew up in the restrictive, male-dominated culture of Pakistan but did not allow it to crush her feminine creativity. After moving to the US in high school, she started a career on Wall Street but then realized fashion was her true calling and moved to Milan to run a design consulting business. In 2005 she relocated to New York and established Signette, which is sold at Henri Bendel and can be found online at bluefly.com.
Gina, Aysha Said and Nancy.
My first impression of the line was that it was high quality but drab. I saw racks of sheath dresses in black, grey, green and brown, with contrast stitching the only accent that stood out. Then I remembered my mother’s admonition to “Try it on! It looks different on your body than on the hanger.” I asked Gina to model for me and she chose a black dress with spaghetti straps and an embroidered bodice.
Well, we all know that Mom is always right. Aysha feels that sexy is in the details, and a careful examination of her dresses makes you notice subtle intricacies such as lacy cutouts around the hem, and multi-layered folds at the collar. These details may not stand out at first glance, but they add up to a dress that makes the body look outstanding.
Aysha names Dianne von Furstenberg as her greatest inspiration (besides a love of fashion, they both share a keen business sense), and I see a strong similarity in the two lines, not in style, but in the concept of flattering, wearable dresses that can go from day to evening. I expect great things from her in the future, and if she ever branches out into pants she’ll make a fortune, because if someone could make a pair of pants as flattering as her dresses I’d buy ten thousand of them.
Next–Academy of Art University’s runway show at the Big Tent
By Nancy Lichtenstein