“I just love to see the cityscape,” musician and singer-songwriter, Ethel Cain shares as she explored this years New York and Paris Fashion Week. For the artist, fashion and what we put out externally is all part of the storytelling process. This year, the musician takes us along with her, so that we may witness fashion week through the evergreen eyes of Ethel Cain.
For her runway debut during New York Fashion Week, the artist steps a little further than what she is used to. Cain was raised a Southern Baptist and grew up in a heavily patriotic household. Her three released albums, Golden Age, Inbred, and Preacher’s Daughter, encompass a nontraditional pastiche between conservative roots and sonic bliss. Walking in NYFW for Eckhaus Latta and Miu Miu, Cain is relishing in every monotonous moment the city has to offer.
To commence her NYFW, Ethel sat first row for Proenza Schouler followed by her runway debut for Eckhaus Latta. While in New York, the musician had a stream of sold-out shows in the city where she shares her hymnal debut, Preacher’s Daughter, which was released earlier this year. Friends Mike Eckhaus, Matthew Williams, Hari Nef, and Jamie Campbell watched her tender offerings on stage—a nice pause of reflection in between shows. Followed by her walk in the Miu Miu Spring-Summer 2023 cooling for Paris Fashion Week. See below for
Does fashion lend another way to tell a story in your music, how do they collide and intertwine?
Oh definitely, when I started this project I was buying heaps of old clothes; gunnesax dresses and old blouses with high necks, all types of scratchy linens and cottons that were very heavy and unforgiving. I wanted to really choke the character out in that era of women’s clothing that didn’t allow for a lot of freedom. For this particular part of the project I’ve been putting out this year, though, she’s been wearing a lot of old denim and t-shirts with the sleeves cut off while she searches for freedom anywhere she can get it. I think wardrobe has been one of my favorite parts of putting Ethel together.
What is the most enchanting about walking around the streets of New York and Paris during Fashion Week?
I just love to see the cityscape. Living in a rural era, it’s not a sight you’re as used to as someone who lives in a city, so it’s fun to just take in all the overwhelming everything. It’s fun to put on some nice clothes for once and run around for a week. It’s exhilarating.
What was your runway debut walking Eckhaus Latta and Miu Miu like? Were you nervous? How was the experience different than performing your music?
I had a few butterflies but nothing like I get before I play a show. It was honestly just fun to be doing something other than singing like I’d been doing for the past 3 months. It felt good to try something else on for size.
What do you hope to embody when getting ready in the morning? Is there music you're listening to that helps set the mood?
Honestly, just a version of myself that’s put together enough to get through the day. I’ll usually just listen to whatever song I’ve found recently that I’m obsessed with.
How are you keeping your heart and mind open these days?
They swing open and closed like a screen door in a hurricane. Every day, there’s a new situation that no one can navigate for you so you just have to cross your fingers and pray you know what the hell you’re doing, at least enough to not make a total mess of things.