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NYFW FW22: Womenswear roundup

By Kristopher Fraser

Feb 18, 2022


Image: Michael Kors FW22

Alas, New York Fashion Week has come to a close. What was expected to be a lackluster NYFW with marquee designers like Tom Ford, Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, and Thom Browne missing, turned out to be pleasantly surprising. Top-tier designers, like Carolina Herrera and Michael Kors, managed to provide that expected level of heritage glamour we’ve come to know both brands for.

Wes Gordon’s designs for Carolina Herrera were ready for the Oscar’s red carpet. Meanwhile, Michael Kors Collection was its usual classic Americana self. Short hemlines, streamlined boots, mid-calf lengths, and leg-revealing slashes gave new mean to the phrase “skies out thighs out.” It was all about the power of the leg for Michael Kors Collection this season. Long live long legs.

Designers are also working on redefining what party dressing means. After we had to spend around a year with on-again-off-again lockdowns and city “pauses”, we are ready to celebrate. It was overdue time that we ditched the sweatpants, but what were the party girls looking to wear.

Christian Cowan gave us his signature sparkle and shine with a show at One World Trade Center Observatory. The designer, who is regularly inspired by nightlife, brought luxe fabrications intertwined with crystals, feathers, sequins, and glitter. PatBo presented crystal-embellished tops and gowns, and LaQuan Smith gave us plenty of sex appeal with skin-revealing skirts, dresses, and crop tops. There was no shortage of fun and sex selling this season.

Image: Christian Cowan FW22
Image: LaQuan Smith FW22

Gowns galore

Oh, but in the immortal words of Aretha Franklin, there were also gowns, beautiful gowns. Christian Siriano, Bibhu Mohapatra, and Markarian were ready for a society ball. It was dramatic ball gowns galore for these three designers who have dressed everyone from Hollywood actresses to First Ladies. In the spirit of reminding us that the world pause was over, these designers created evening wear that was fit for a gala or a movie premiere. Life has returned, and so has our appetite for a Cinderella-worthy gown.

Image: Bibhu Mohapatra FW22
Image: Markarian FW22

Telfar gave us logomania with his signature T logo on T-shirts, sweaters, and pants. Of course, no Telfar show would be complete without the designer’s signature Telfar shopping tote bags. Sometimes it is best to stick with what you know when you already know what your customers want and love. Sergio Hudson stuck to his new era tailored womenswear pieces but decided to push himself a bit with leopard prints and miniskirts.

The Blonds provided a great grand finale to New York Fashion Week fusing the worlds of high fashion and costume. The brand’s collection was inspired by their love of all things macabre with an homage to famed characters including Dracula, Elvira, and Lady Death. The Blonds also collaborated with Motorola to feature three new color tones that will be on the next generation of Razr smartphones. Guest model and choreographer Parris Goebel also walked the runway in a custom corset.

Despite Omicron throwing New York Fashion Week up in the air, household name designers not participating, and fewer international editors, the annual trade show still brought some hype. Society is still inching back to normalcy, but New York Fashion Week is still going as resilient as ever.