How to Win Friends and Influence People

by Sway Benns


What We Talk About When We Talk About A/W '15.

Fashion month drew to a long, leisurely close last week and now we're doing what one does after any change of season: we're reflecting.

Trends, those moments of collective consciousness, mirror the mood of our society: history allows that at times we are lustful, conservative, harried, mourning--and then these feelings  find their way into our fire alphets.

Dusty Rose
Dusty Rose

What then, does dusty rose say about us? A quick Pinterest search suggests an obsession with vintage weddings, but these hues (volleying from powder pink to a rich salmon), were downright wearable this season. On the men's side: pleated pants and silk kimono blouses on the runway at Duckie Brown. On the women's: fringed skirts at J. Crew, long coats at Kate Spade, and full color-blocked and monochromatic offerings at Daniel Silverstain and Jonathan Simkhai. The look found itself popping right off the runway and on to the biting, grey, New York City streets.

A photo posted by Athena Calderone (@eyeswoon) on Feb 12, 2015 at 6:42am PST

We imagine this woman scurrying quickly across the concrete foundations of the city, like an impressionistic offering at the tail end of a cherry blossom festival, the wind blowing stained petals through Bryant Park. If nothing else, the hue offered a reprieve: the hope for a moment of spring in a future winter.

</p> <p>A little impracticality found its way into beauty: hair was scraped back and sleek on the Diesel runway, voluminous and towering at A Detacher, precariously balanced at Daniel Silverstain, wrangled into submission with several accessories at Prada.

A video posted by Hervé Léger by Max Azria (@herveleger) on Feb 14, 2015 at 9:53am PST

Also, see: this YS Park Metal Mesh Diffuser, which mysteriously cropped up and multiplied backstage this season, and was the subject of many a fashion blog sleuthing. SPOILER ALERT: It's kind of just like every other hair dryer diffuser on the market, except it's probably, in some vague way, slightly better.

A/W 15 hair proposes: Give in to architectural shaping until your forearms cry out in agony and/or ecstasy, and by all means rid yourself of that slouch lest you suffer any long-term shade from your chiropractor, or allow your quadruple bun a moment of gravitational weakness. This is all totally okay. Your hair is very close to your brain, and so it appears to be a reasonable expense if time is indeed a luxury. And one should consider it so.

The end is near, or so beat the steady drum of Kanye West x Adidas Originals collection: a few options on how to dress for the apocalypse, or, at the very least, the start of Yeezy Season. And through this presentation Kanye exposed another fashion week trend we’ll heartily embrace: technology. The show, which was projected in theaters across the country, created a meta layer of content sharing. Those searching the #Yeezy hashtag on Instagram might stumble upon the now iconic shot of North West flailing in the front row, or a behind the scenes image from DONDA squad Virgil Abloh and Jerry Lorenzo.

A photo posted by jerrylorenzo (@jerrylorenzo) on Feb 12, 2015 at 2:09pm PST

But they might also find themselves on the Instagram of a kid 500 miles away from the presentation's epicenter, one who happened to capture a projection of the show and an exclusive snippet of West's new song "Wolves," on their iPhone, which is shared, inevitably, to an audience of new friends. No need to wait in line, to jostle over optimal seating. Exclusivity left the front row, and in that, West seemed reaffirm his mission for mass production. (Apropos, during NYFW, Instagram saw an influx of nearly 85 million likes and comments related to the week's events.)

Tom Ford’s decision to show in Los Angeles, on the first day of London Fashion Week, no less, offered an opposing point of view: All exclusivity, all the time. The Milk Studios hosted, pre-Oscars event cracked in at under 5K Instagram posts, an infinitesimal smattering of which appeared to be taken of the rose petal scattered runway during the actual event—which, despite its anti-fashion week location and timing, did not find itself short on attendees. The buzz offered an opposing ease, one that embraces the tactile.

A photo posted by Flaunt Magazine (@flauntmagazine) on Feb 20, 2015 at 10:34pm PST

The collective conscious seems to be agreeing: the modern, 2015 human being is nimble. Despite the fears that our technologies would become our masters, our eyes glued to screens, our thought process handing itself over to the status of our LTE service, this A/W season saw us stepping into a physical world and creating a dialog between space and time, exclusivity and inclusivity, pixels and texture (and there was no shortage of texture! See: MSGM, Etro, Parkchoonmoo).

This trend found its way off the runway, LVMH collaborated with artist Vincent Moustache and photographer Carin Olsson to document the designers and their creations in the lead up to the LVMH Prize Young Fashion Designer 2015 Award. The house willingly let go of the creative reins, allowing the audience to receive the work and project it back onto LVMH, offering a new orientation of the collections.

A photo posted by Carin Olsson (@parisinfourmonths) on Mar 4, 2015 at 2:19am PST

Perhaps we're moving beyond that ubiquitous 2014 word, "content." The modern consumer, it seems, wants to have a conversation.

To close: We’re working on our wellness issue, so we'll leave you with a final cosign (that appears to highlight the desire for a figurative and literal lightness of foot): the low heel.

A photo posted by Cara Delevingne (@caradelevingne) on Mar 10, 2015 at 6:07am PDT

Written by Sway Benns