This year, I attended my first New York Fashion Week (NYFW) and viewed several different shows. It sort of felt like living out my own personal version of The Devil Wears Prada, which, of course, made the whole experience a little rose-colored.
Even so, I kept my eyes on the prize and did my best to be a good journalist, taking notes (and lots of photos) to reflect on at the end of each day.
There were, of course, a few statement-making styles and bizarre runway trends, but there were also a few solid trends and themes I noticed that stood out across the various shows and within the world of street style.
The big three (at least in my mind) were: a dedication to magenta, lots of sparkle, and an unwavering love for good old-fashioned black. Let’s dive in a little deeper.
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Magenta, Pantone’s Color of the Year
I’m not sure if it’s due to the Barbiecore trend or an intense observation of Pantone’s Color of the Year (Viva Magenta), but shades of this bright pink were everywhere, both on the runway and off. For me, it was highly reminiscent of the “Think Pink!” number in the 1957 movie Funny Face.
No matter the reason behind this color’s prominence at this season’s NYFW, I do think Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director at Pantone Color Institute, has tapped into a general feeling we’re encountering in our modern world:
“In this age of technology, we look to draw inspiration from nature and what is real. PANTONE 18-1750 Viva Magenta descends from the red family and is inspired by the red of cochineal, one of the most precious dyes belonging to the natural dye family,” she said.
Outside the world of couture and NYFW, there’s evidence of DTC brands also leaning into this shade of pink. From Cariuma shoes and NADAAM sweaters to Terez's color-blocked joggers, it’s obvious the fashion crowd isn’t the only audience on board with “thinking pink.”
Metal, Rhinestones, and Sequins
Two of the shows I attended (Cavanagh Baker and Bronx And Banco) were heavy on the glitz factor. From sequins to sparkles and rhinestones, many of the pieces were gorgeously bedazzled with light-catching materials and accents.
With Cavanagh Baker’s background in designing pieces for country music stars and Natalie De’Banco’s gowns worthy of an art museum exhibit, both brought wow factor with pieces that had elements of both old Hollywood glamour and futuristic modernity.
For the average consumer, high-sparkle might not be the go-to for everyday wear. But brands like Reformation and House of Harlow 1960 are bringing items that tap into this theme, albeit in a more toned-down, everyday wear context.
There’s also the world of jewelry, where Ceremony and Brilliant Earth are bringing glitz and glamour to show that sparkle is alive and well. Aurate and Oomiay are two of my other favorites that do this well at an even more affordable price.
Deep Blacks: The Old Standby
Classics never die, right? That was certainly true at this NYFW with plenty of deep blacks and quality-made pieces on display at every turn.
Black is a hard color to mess up, and leaves plenty of room for accessories and details that add subtle elegance to an ensemble. This NYFW, designers used deep blacks in velvet, satin, and suede that offset some of the sparkle and shimmer discussed above.
Attendees (myself included) also favored the black palette, which felt appropriate for the season, as NYC is still mid-winter with Fashion Week falling in the early part of the year.
“Between other prevailing NYFW trends, we see black as a 'back-to-basics' approach. Black is a color that flatters nearly everyone, is considered appropriate in almost any scenario, and can serve as a blank canvas for staple pieces, upon which to add trendier statement items or pops of other colors,” said Diego Abba, CEO of luxury online marketplace italist. “Black will always be desirable and is likely to age more gracefully than colors that could show wear and tear more easily.”
NYFW Trends in a DTC World
You don’t have to be walking the runway to tap into some of the key trends I saw at NYFW. Instead, look to DTC brands with great offerings at an affordable price point — many of them are reinventing high fashion in a more wearable, everyday context.