The best of New York Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2016

Spring/Summer fashion took centre stage in the Big Apple last week with designer collections making their way down the runway.

Models walked the runway in hijabs for Indonesian designer Anniesa Hasibuan’s show, a first in New York Fashion Week history. Lev Radin / Pacific Press / LightRocket via Getty Images
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Jostling for space among some of the biggest names in the industry, one tiny label has managed to steal the limelight. Designer Anniesa Hasibuan is not only the first Indonesian to show at New York, but also the first label to send models wearing hijabs down the NYFW runway. Her collection featured feminine, layered looks in tones of muted pinks, taupes and eau de nils, ­offering a freshly modern take on modesty. While her collection is hardly a revelation in this region, in New York, against a backdrop of Trump-fuelled ­Islamaphobia, the fashion crowd showed their ­endorsement of this one-year-old Muslim label with a standing ovation.

Distressed in West

Kanye West paraded his new Yeezy Season 4 collection – however, it was memorable mainly for the wrong reasons. Opting for an outdoor location, and the visual effect of models standing in formation, clad in his second skin pieces (nude Spanx, anyone?), West fell foul of his own poor timekeeping. With the Yeezy show starting much later than scheduled, models were left standing in the sun for more than two hours. Amid reports of fainting models, members of the audience having to assist others clearly in distress, and a general breaking of ranks to sit on the floor, we can hardly ­remember what the clothes even looked like.

Wild West Lauren

Ralph Lauren is one of the big names putting his considerable fashion weight behind the see-now, buy-now revolution sweeping the industry. His SS17 collection, which was shown outside the Ralph Lauren Mansion on Madison Avenue, and headlined by ­supermodel Kendall Jenner, was available in stores immediately after the show, making the designer the largest American brand to do so. His show took on a western-inspired theme and delivered on the all-American aesthetic he is so known for – complete with fringed jackets, embroidered western-style shirts, southwestern ponchos, macramé and cowboy hats.

Rave on the runway

Marc Jacob likes to show his ­collection at the end of the week, acting as unofficial closing party for New York. This year, he seemed to take the theme literally, as he opted to send a full-blown 1980s-style rave down the runway. Long socks were worn with shimmering mini dresses, while fluid metallic capes and coats sat over hotpants and knee-high platform boots. Outrageously fun and upbeat, the only missed note was the bizarre – and let’s face it, hideous – mock dreadlocks on the predominately white models.

Bend it like Beckham

Victoria Beckham’s new collection is the polar opposite of the severe dresses that launched her fashion career. Gone is the polish of old, replaced ­instead with a louche, sensual aesthetic of relaxed tops and forgiving trousers, shirts that tumble off shoulders and fluid pleated skirts that ripple and sway. Fabrics are crushed velvets, in sugared-almond pastels, and muted nude silks, all finished not with vertiginous heels, but flat canvas boots. Creating an aura of effortless slick we all yearn for, Beckham has done it once again.

Hilfiger’s stormy waters

The big news from New York is the launch of the new line, Gigi, a collaboration between ­Tommy Hilfiger and model-of-the-moment Gigi Hadid. Following the likes of Ralph Lauren, and the see-now buy-now phenomenon, the collection hit stores straight after the show. Filled with preppy pieces, all with a nautical spin (think tops with anchors, jaunty stripes and naval-style jackets) – the collaboration is sweet and wearable. However, all is not well, as despite being only a few days old, the new venture has already been slapped with a cease-and-desist order by handbag manufacturer Gigi, which is claiming property rights to the name. This will be a blow to Hilfiger, who is relying on the ­association with Hadid and her famous friends (who all turned up for the show) to boost stagnant sales and make his brand cool again.

Rockabilly cool

Coach’s reinvention under Stuart Vevers continues apace, as he shifts the once-dusty label towards a younger, altogether cooler audience. Vevers layered flouncy, sheer dresses with camouflage bomber jackets, and shark-motif knits with studded brothel-creeper shoes. Prints ranged from pretty florals to ­pictures of Elvis, in a style that had feminine whimsy teamed with New York -style street-smarts.