Tennis Legend Serena Williams Honored as ‘Fashion Icon’ at Fashion Industry’s Big Awards Night 

Serena Williams attends the CFDA Fashion Awards at the American Museum of Natural History on Monday, Nov. 6, 2023, in New York. (AP)
Serena Williams attends the CFDA Fashion Awards at the American Museum of Natural History on Monday, Nov. 6, 2023, in New York. (AP)
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Tennis Legend Serena Williams Honored as ‘Fashion Icon’ at Fashion Industry’s Big Awards Night 

Serena Williams attends the CFDA Fashion Awards at the American Museum of Natural History on Monday, Nov. 6, 2023, in New York. (AP)
Serena Williams attends the CFDA Fashion Awards at the American Museum of Natural History on Monday, Nov. 6, 2023, in New York. (AP)

Tennis legend Serena Williams told a glittery fashion industry audience how fashion became a favored mode of expression as she grew up in the public eye, with the tennis court serving as her runway.

“I knew when I was a little girl that I was different, so I explored fashion and style as a way to distinguish myself,” Williams said as she accepted the Fashion Icon award Monday night from the Council of Fashion Designers of America. “In many ways for me, the tennis courts became my runway, and the US Open was my own New York Fashion Week.”

Reimagining the traditional tennis outfit became a way, she said, to express “my individuality and my confidence and most importantly, my culture.”

Williams, who retired from tennis last year, is the first athlete to win the Fashion Icon award, and it was presented to her by Kim Kardashian, a CFDA honoree last year. Kardashian called Williams “fearless, heroic, authentic, iconic — the greatest of all time.”

The fashion industry’s equivalent of Oscar night was held at the American Museum of Natural History in Manhattan and hosted by Anne Hathaway. In top designer awards, Catherine Holstein of the label Khaite was named womenswear designer of the year, and Willy Chavarria won for menswear. The award for accessories went to Ashley Olsen and Mary-Kate Olsen of the label The Row.

Among other honors: Gwyneth Paltrow accepted the Innovation award for goop, her 15-year old lifestyle brand, presented by Demi Moore. Vanessa Hudgens presented a tribute from the CFDA board of directors to Vera Wang, for her impact on the bridal industry. Designer Maria Cornejo won a lifetime achievement award, presented by Laura Linney.

There was also a tribute to the 50th anniversary of hip-hop with a short film by director Hype Williams, introduced by Mary J. Blige and with music by Pharrell.

When Williams, now 42, retired from tennis, she said she needed to make the tough choice to focus on motherhood. She gave birth in August to a baby girl, almost exactly a year after her last match as a tennis star. Adira River Ohanian is the second child — and second daughter — for Williams and her husband, Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian. Their first, Olympia, was born in 2017.

In her speech, she spoke fondly about how she'd learned to express her creativity on the court. “I designed skirts out of denim and I wore purple tutus and bodysuits,” she said, “and put beads in my hair, and braids. It was really just a fun time for me.”

Williams studied fashion during her playing career, and in 2018, launched her “S by Serena” clothing line, which she said in her speech was intended “to inspire women to embrace their bodies and love who they are no matter their size, race or income.”

Among her many thank-yous, she saved her last for her mother, “for actually making those first tennis outfits when I was young.” Watching her sew, she said, “created this creativity in me that I still have to this day."

The CFDA awards are presented by Amazon Fashion. Other honors: Alina Cho received a media award, Domenico De Sole won the founder's award, Mara Hoffman won a sustainability award, and the international award went to Jonathan Anderson for JW Anderson and Loewe.



De Sarno Pursues Gucci Reset with Embellished Coats at Milan Fashion Week

A model presents a creation from the Gucci Fall/Winter 2024 collection during Fashion Week in Milan, Italy, February 23, 2024. (Reuters)
A model presents a creation from the Gucci Fall/Winter 2024 collection during Fashion Week in Milan, Italy, February 23, 2024. (Reuters)
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De Sarno Pursues Gucci Reset with Embellished Coats at Milan Fashion Week

A model presents a creation from the Gucci Fall/Winter 2024 collection during Fashion Week in Milan, Italy, February 23, 2024. (Reuters)
A model presents a creation from the Gucci Fall/Winter 2024 collection during Fashion Week in Milan, Italy, February 23, 2024. (Reuters)

Gucci creative director Sabato De Sarno showed a lineup of ornately decorated wool coats on the catwalk in Milan on Friday, building on his approach for reigniting Kering’s prized label with sensual, pared-back styles.

Models marched down a slightly elevated runway in a sparse, window-lined space parading soft wool coats, long bustier dresses and trim suit jackets cinched with thin belts.

Adding to the chunky loafers, mini-shorts and glossy Jackie handbags that have become label signatures under the new designer's direction were thigh-high riding boots, small purses shaped like half moons, towering platform heels and delicate, see-through dresses with lace.

De Sarno's designs, which have begun trickling into stores, are key to reigniting sales at Gucci, Kering’s largest brand, accounting for half of the French luxury group’s sales and over two thirds of its profit.

The French group recently overhauled top management, sending longtime executive Jean-Francois Palus to Italy to manage the label as it pushes Gucci upmarket.

This consists of emphasizing more classic styles and leather goods in a bid to regain traction after losing ground to rivals like LVMH's Dior and Louis Vuitton.

Stores will not be fully stocked with De Sarno’s styles until later in the year - perhaps by June - but early signs are “very encouraging”, Kering deputy CEO Francesca Bellettini said earlier this month.

The group cautioned that margins will be lower this year as it continues to invest in Gucci.

UBS analysts have flagged early signs of "improving brand heat", noting Gucci is "in a much better place than before,” earlier this month.


New Designers Make a Splash at Moschino, Tod’s and Blumarine during Milan Fashion Week

 Models present creations from the Moschino Fall-Winter 2024/2025 collection during Fashion Week in Milan, Italy, February 22, 2024. (Reuters)
Models present creations from the Moschino Fall-Winter 2024/2025 collection during Fashion Week in Milan, Italy, February 22, 2024. (Reuters)
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New Designers Make a Splash at Moschino, Tod’s and Blumarine during Milan Fashion Week

 Models present creations from the Moschino Fall-Winter 2024/2025 collection during Fashion Week in Milan, Italy, February 22, 2024. (Reuters)
Models present creations from the Moschino Fall-Winter 2024/2025 collection during Fashion Week in Milan, Italy, February 22, 2024. (Reuters)

Designers are giving their first impressions at their new fashion houses during Milan Fashion Week.

In a game of musical chairs, Matteo Tamburini showed his first collection for Tod's on Friday just hours before his predecessor there, Walter Chiapponi, made his debut as creative director of Blumarine.

Adrian Appiolaza premiered his first collection for Moschino Thursday evening in a bittersweet moment just a month and a half after being named. His appointment followed the sudden death of David Renne just 10 days into his tenure.

Here are highlights from designer debuts during Milan Fashion Week of mostly womenswear previews for Fall-Winter 2024-25.

TAKING A STAND AT MOSCHINO Having just six weeks to pull together a collection forced Argentinian Appiolaza to be very decisive, creating a collection that he said "didn’t feel too overthought."

He plunged into the archives, taking inspiration from fashion house founder Franco Moschino’s sense of subversion, love of archetypes and trompe l’oeil playfulness.

Appiolaza’s vision invoked a dreaminess. Looks were as if being roused from sleep, and the garments were at times surreal — folded newspaper boat hats, turbans created from shirt sleeves, or a cowboy hat that was unfinished in the back, like a piece of stage scenery seen only from the front. A top was constructed out of men’s ties; a golden bowtie hung sideways as a necklace. Extravagant strands of pearls were worn under a sheer dress.

The feminine silhouette was defined by ruffles, bustles and slip dresses, complemented by men’s vests fitted with garters, oversized cloth shirts and masculine trousers.

"The idea was trying to convey Franco’s universe. It was not really about creating a ready-to-wear collection, but something that told a story," Appiolaza said backstage after the Thursday evening show.

While many brands made circumspect reference to global conflicts, responding mostly with comfort collections of cozy clothes, Appiolaza was more direct, with garments emblazoned with peace signs or the word PEACE written capitals. "I thought it was a good idea to bring peace as a universal message," the designer said.

Closing the show, a Black model wore a top of the Italian tricolor, green, white and red, which Appiolaza said was part of the collection’s message of inclusion. Some social media commentors read it also as a statement about the war in Gaza: the Palestinian flag is green, white, red and black, the black reflected in the closing look’s monochrome skirt and collar detailing on the tricolor top with a trailing tassel. The model carried a piece of bread.

TOD’S FOR THE TRAVELER Matteo Tamburini’s journey with Tod’s departed from a Milan tram depot, with the city’s distinctive vintage orange trams serving as a backdrop.

"We selected this location because it speaks to dynamism, which is closely linked to Tod’s aesthetic. The collection was thought for people who travel, who move in the world," Tamburini said backstage, citing the daytime workhorse Di Bag and the trademark driving moccasin as key starting points.

The mostly monochrome looks featured rich leather dresses, skirts and overcoats, made cozy with layered, twisting knitwear. Trenches were oversized; button-down cotton shirts were layered one over the other; trousers featured deep cuffs, while jacket shoulders were slightly enlarged. Bags were soft, molding into the body. Belts had oblong buckles resembling a vehicle grating. The driving shoe featured long tassels, for movement.

Tamburini said the collection reflects the duality of Milan, at once an expression of the bourgeois and Italy's industrial power.

Tod’s group recently announced an operation to delist the company. Speaking on the sidelines of the show, chairman Diego Della Valle told reporters there was no reason to sell the business after the operation is complete. "We have a family business with young people who want to do this job. What could be better?’’ he asked.

Front-row guests included Chinese actor Xiao Zhan, US actor Larsen Thompson and South Korean singer Jungwoo.

BLUMARINE’S NIGHTTIME PLUNGE Walter Chiopponi took Blumarine back to its romantic rebel days of the 1990s when the star vibes of Chloe Sevigny and Mila Jovovich aligned with the fashion house.

The creative director assembled an array of female codes for his debut collection: bows and lace, animal prints and florals, kitten knits and silk.

The Blumarine girl was wandering home after a night out, at times disheveled in an animal print coat, silken shorts and floral pumps with a tattered bow that looked well walked-in. Full of the emotion of the evening, she held it together in soft pastel knits and floret applique tops and dresses that epitomized femininity. A velour slip dress with lace gloves, and a black lace dress over animal print tights gave boudoir looks the final say.

"The clothes are made by the city," Chiopponi said.


Prada Gives New Meaning to Bows and Aprons, Historic Elements of Women’s Wardrobe, for Next Season 

Models wear creations part of the Prada women's Fall-Winter 2024-25 collection presented at the Milan's Fashion Week in Milan, Italy, 22 February 2024. (EPA)
Models wear creations part of the Prada women's Fall-Winter 2024-25 collection presented at the Milan's Fashion Week in Milan, Italy, 22 February 2024. (EPA)
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Prada Gives New Meaning to Bows and Aprons, Historic Elements of Women’s Wardrobe, for Next Season 

Models wear creations part of the Prada women's Fall-Winter 2024-25 collection presented at the Milan's Fashion Week in Milan, Italy, 22 February 2024. (EPA)
Models wear creations part of the Prada women's Fall-Winter 2024-25 collection presented at the Milan's Fashion Week in Milan, Italy, 22 February 2024. (EPA)

Don’t call them nostalgic, the bows and aprons, silken slips and hats that filled the Prada runway. Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons recovered elements of a women’s wardrobe history and reconstituted them into something “modern.”

“It’s a history of women,” Prada told reporters backstage at the fall-winter 2024-25 preview show on Thursday. This act of reinventing items fished from deep inside the closet “frees them from their cage,” Prada said, giving them new meaning.

The looks are modular. Woolen aprons, facing front or back, partially obscure slip skirts, closing with bows or floral appliques — the silken touches defy the male silhouette. The skirt combos are paired with an accompanying jacket with a silken back panel, or twinsets in bold color combinations, royal red and purple, yesteryear olive and pink.

Shift dresses are covered in the front with wispy, monochrome tabs that flutter with each step. Masculine elements include skirts cuffed at the hem and Varsity letter jacket emblazoned with a “P” for wannabe athletes that never made the cut. Cocktail dresses feature big bows and a fur collar.

The color palette is mostly dark neutral, punctuated by colorful hats in aubergine or turquoise that elongate the form. In velvet they have the feeling of a Beehive, covered with feathers of a mod 1960s brushed do. The Prada Cleo bag has an oversized shoulder strap. Bags also fasten to the wrist with a leather strap.

“I always choose to work with pieces from history because for me history teaches us everything, in every field from politics to fashion to art. Anything we are comes from our past,” Prada said.

The show, she said, was meant as a gesture of “goodness,” something needed as an antidote to aggression, “especially in these times.” In that vein, models walked with their hands clutching their breasts, in a protective gesture.

“Fashion is also about love,” Simons added. “The love of beauty, the love of history.”

Emma Watson, Tracy Ellis Ross and Gwendoline Christie took front-row seats in the Prada showroom, perched above a plexiglass runway covering scattered fall leaves.


Milan Fashion Week Fires Up Catwalks despite Cautious Outlook

Milan is back in the limelight with the start of its Fashion Week, with 56 runway shows planned. GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP
Milan is back in the limelight with the start of its Fashion Week, with 56 runway shows planned. GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP
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Milan Fashion Week Fires Up Catwalks despite Cautious Outlook

Milan is back in the limelight with the start of its Fashion Week, with 56 runway shows planned. GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP
Milan is back in the limelight with the start of its Fashion Week, with 56 runway shows planned. GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP

The fashion set moves to Italy Wednesday for Milan Fashion Week, marked by a new designer at Moschino but held amid an uncertain outlook for luxury.
The women's runway shows from Fendi, Prada, Versace and Dolce & Gabbana, among many others, promise a dose of festivity and froufrou in Italy's northern fashion capital, AFP said.
Following fashion weeks in New York and London, Milan again has its moment in the limelight, with 56 runway shows through Sunday on its Fall/Winter 2024-2025 calendar.
But they come amid a backdrop of uncertainty in the global luxury fashion market.
Muted growth projections, inflation concerns, an economic slowdown in China and geopolitical risk loom large for the sector expected to expand globally by just three to five percent this year, according to McKinsey's State of Fashion report published in November.
That is below an estimated five to seven percent for 2023.
Italy's fashion sector -- which includes clothing and leather, shoes, jewelry, cosmetics and accessories -- grew four percent to nearly 103 billion euros ($110 billion) last year, according to estimates from the National Chamber for Italian Fashion.
The association's head, Carlo Capasa, said it was too early to know how 2024 will bode for the industry.
"It's a complex year, it will take resilience," Capasa told journalists earlier this month.
"We know there are three wars, European and US elections. It's a year of transition."
Glitterati gather
But frayed nerves are rarely on display in the front rows, as the glitterati gather for the jam-packed week of fashion's finest.

More than 100,000 people, including buyers, media and brand representatives, are expected for Fashion Week, a rise of 10 percent over last February, Capasa said.
High on the list for fashion watchers will be the debut collection on Thursday of Adrian Appiolaza for Moschino.
The Argentine designer, previously at Loewe, was named creative director of the irreverent, pop-influenced brand last month after his predecessor died just 10 days into the job.
Gucci veteran Davide Renne, who died in November, had been brought in after Jeremy Scott stepped down after a decade at the helm.
Founded by Franco Moschino, the label is known for playful, quirky creations often embellished with slogans -- such as "Gilt without Guilt" or "Good Taste Doesn't Exist" -- or riffing on iconic consumer brands from McDonald's to Barbie.
Debut collections are also expected from Walter Chiapponi at Blumarine -- the flirty, jeans-heavy brand previously led by Nicola Brognano -- and Matteo Tamburini at Tod's.
Chiapponi had been artistic director at Tod's since 2019, and when he left he was replaced by Tamburini, most recently head of ready-to-wear for Bottega Veneta.


Burberry Presents Star-studded Moody Autumnal Collection

A person walks past a Burberry store undergoing refurbishment on New Bond Street in London, Britain, March 11, 2023. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls
A person walks past a Burberry store undergoing refurbishment on New Bond Street in London, Britain, March 11, 2023. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls
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Burberry Presents Star-studded Moody Autumnal Collection

A person walks past a Burberry store undergoing refurbishment on New Bond Street in London, Britain, March 11, 2023. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls
A person walks past a Burberry store undergoing refurbishment on New Bond Street in London, Britain, March 11, 2023. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls

Burberry's creative director, Daniel Lee, on Monday showed his third brief at London Fashion Week, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary, with an ode to the brand's outdoor heritage for the luxury house's autumn-winter 2024 collection.
Set in a dark marquee in London's Victoria Park where guests sat on big fluffy brown cushions, songs from late British singer Amy Winehouse set the mood for the night.
The star-studded show was attended by actress Olivia Coleman, US Vogue Editor in Chief Anna Wintour, model Jourdan Dunn, and Irish actor Barry Keoghan among others, Reuters.
Monday's show heavily featured outerwear and sporty silhouettes with bomber jackets and Burberry's iconic trench coat that sat alongside flowy beaded and velvet dresses.
It noticeably lacked the brand's new signature 'Knight Blue', the same color featured in its "takeover" of British department store Harrods this month.
Models walked down a grass runway on chunky-soled leather boots, parading leather and faux-fur coats in shades of muted green and brown, oversized stripy suit jackets and trousers with sipper detailing.
British models Naomi Campbell, Agyness Deyn and Lily Cole were among those sashaying on the catwalk.
Burberry's famous beige, black and red check was reimagined into the moody Autumnal color palette and featured on the inside of floor-sweeping skirts with long slits down the side.
Accessories included checked umbrellas, large canvas, leather and faux-fur bags in cream, brown and green - often adorned with gold detailing - and paired with scarves worn over the head.
Lee, who was behind the revamp of Italian fashion brand Bottega Veneta, is facing pressure to produce a winning collection for Burberry which is battling a slowdown in demand for luxury goods.
The 168-year-old company issued a warning on its profits in January, a setback for Chief Executive Jonathan Akeroyd who is seeking to reposition the brand as "modern British luxury".


Naomi Campbell Walks for Star-studded Burberry Show at London Fashion Week

Naomi Campbell. (Getty Images)
Naomi Campbell. (Getty Images)
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Naomi Campbell Walks for Star-studded Burberry Show at London Fashion Week

Naomi Campbell. (Getty Images)
Naomi Campbell. (Getty Images)

For Londoners, rain is simply a fact of life. But for Burberry, it’s the inspiration for seemingly endless variations of luxurious outerwear, from the heritage brand’s best-selling trench coat to oversized duffels and fur-lined bombers.
The British fashion house showcased its latest designs Monday at London Fashion Week to a soulful Amy Winehouse soundtrack interspersed with a woman’s voice saying “I love London ... the smell of London when it rains.”
“Saltburn” star Barry Keoghan and “The Crown” actress Olivia Coleman were among celebrities who turned up on the VIP front row to watch the show, which drew heavily on the heritage house’s military history and its signature check print, The Associated Press said.
Models wore double-breasted coats buttoned all the way up to the neck, as if bracing against the inclement British weather. Some donned mannish, oversized coats in military greens and browns paired with matching wide-leg trousers, while others covered up with an elegant silk scarf wrapped around the head.
Some models even strutted down the catwalk clutching a collapsible umbrella – in Burberry’s trademark check, of course.
It’s no surprise that the elements feature so prominently in the show. The fashion house’s founder, Thomas Burberry, invented the fabric gabardine, a breathable material used for rainwear, in the late 1800s. The brand’s trench coat, invented around the time of World War I, boasts functional designs like storm shields as well as epaulettes and gun flaps.
It’s not all function and practicality. Flashes of cherry red tartan, used in the lining of a coat or glimpsed in a skirt hem, brightened up a muted palette dominated by khaki and earthy tones. Tough bomber jackets and bulky duffel coats were softened with furry hoods or collars and luxurious fur accessories.
Supermodel Naomi Campbell, sashaying in a shimmering bronze strapless column gown, rounded out the show.
Burberry is traditionally the glitziest event at London Fashion Week, which also features catwalk shows by designers including Erdem, JW Anderson, Roksanda Ilincic and Molly Goddard.
The London displays wrap up on Tuesday, when the fashion crowd decamps to Milan Fashion Week for more new season runway shows.

 

 


London Fashion Week Show at British Museum Irks Greece

Designer Erdem Moralioglu chose the impressive setting of the Athens Parthenon sculptures showroom at the British Museum. HENRY NICHOLLS / AFP
Designer Erdem Moralioglu chose the impressive setting of the Athens Parthenon sculptures showroom at the British Museum. HENRY NICHOLLS / AFP
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London Fashion Week Show at British Museum Irks Greece

Designer Erdem Moralioglu chose the impressive setting of the Athens Parthenon sculptures showroom at the British Museum. HENRY NICHOLLS / AFP
Designer Erdem Moralioglu chose the impressive setting of the Athens Parthenon sculptures showroom at the British Museum. HENRY NICHOLLS / AFP

The Greek Minister of Culture, Lina Mendoni, expressed her anger late on Saturday after a London Fashion week show took place in front of the Parthenon Marbles at the British Museum.
Designer Erdem Moralioglu chose the impressive setting of the Athens Parthenon sculptures showroom at the British Museum to present the autumn winter 2024 collection of his eponymous brand Erdem, inspired by Greek singer Maria Callas and her interpretation of the opera Medea in 1953, AFP said.
"By organizing a fashion show in the halls where the Parthenon Sculptures are exhibited, the British Museum, once again, proves its zero respect for the masterpieces of Pheidias," Mendoni said in a statement.
"The directors of the British Museum trivialize and insult not only the monument but also the universal values that it transmits. The conditions of display and storage of the sculptures, at the Duveen Gallery, are constantly deteriorating. It is time for the stolen and abused sculptural masterpieces to shine in the Attic light," she added.
The sculptures were taken from the Parthenon temple at the Acropolis in Greece in the early 19th century by British diplomat Thomas Bruce, the earl of Elgin.
Athens maintains the marbles, which are a major draw for visitors at London's British Museum, were stolen, while the UK claims they were obtained legally.
The 1963 British Museum Act prohibits the removal of objects from the institution's collection.
But officials at the museum, which is under pressure to repatriate other foreign antiquities, have not ruled out a possible loan deal.
Late November, a diplomatic spat raised eyebrows when Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis expressed his "displeasure" over UK counterpart Rishi Sunak's last minute cancellation of a bilateral meeting set to discuss their long-running dispute over the Parthenon Marbles.
At issue for London was the Greek leader's comments in a BBC interview a day before the meeting about ownership of the 2,500-year-old marbles.
Sunak was allegedly angry about Mitsotakis's comments that having some of the marbles in London and others in Athens was like cutting the Mona Lisa in half.


Paul Costelloe Opens 40-year-old London Fashion Week with Classic Designs

A model presents a creation at the Paul Costelloe catwalk show during London Fashion Week in London, Britain, February 16, 2024. REUTERS/Hollie Adams
A model presents a creation at the Paul Costelloe catwalk show during London Fashion Week in London, Britain, February 16, 2024. REUTERS/Hollie Adams
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Paul Costelloe Opens 40-year-old London Fashion Week with Classic Designs

A model presents a creation at the Paul Costelloe catwalk show during London Fashion Week in London, Britain, February 16, 2024. REUTERS/Hollie Adams
A model presents a creation at the Paul Costelloe catwalk show during London Fashion Week in London, Britain, February 16, 2024. REUTERS/Hollie Adams

London Fashion Week kicked off on Friday with Irish designer Paul Costelloe championing classic looks and bringing a little bit of nostalgia to the catwalk as the showcase event celebrates its 40th birthday.
The 78-year-old designer, who could not attend the show due to illness, presented a mix of whites, dark greys and plenty of tweeds in his "Once upon a Time" autumn/winter 2024 collection, described as "Where Limerick meets Downtown New York".
Models in white jackets and floaty skirts opened the show. A selection of plaid looks followed, with the color palette then turning darker for tailored tweed skirt suits, belted coats and short feminine dresses, Reuters reported.
For the evening, there were patterned frocks with puffy sleeves.
"This collection expresses my view that classic design still has its place in high fashion," Costelloe said in show notes.
"I have added a personal moment of nostalgia by adding a print based on the street where I once lived. It was a glorious moment to dream and live."
Costelloe's team also shared a note from the designer explaining his absence due to a virus and wishing London Fashion Week a "happy 40th birthday".
This year marks 40 years since the British Fashion Council (BFC) held its first London Fashion Week, which is one of the four big catwalk fixtures alongside New York, Milan and Paris and is best known for its emerging talent and avant-garde trends.
On Thursday night, several London landmarks were lit up green for the occasion and other celebrations are planned for the year.
"Of course, 40 is kind of a coming of age, a maturity and when we look back, I think we reflect on the incredible creativity that has come through London, and London Fashion Week as a platform," BFC Chief Executive Caroline Rush told Reuters.
"It continues to be about youth culture, subcultures, creativity, innovation and really leading where the rest of the fashion industry will no doubt follow."
Costelloe's show was one of more than 40 catwalk presentations this London Fashion Week, which runs until February 20, with the likes of Burberry, Bora Aksu and Mark Fast also on the calendar.


Thom Browne Closes Out NY Fashion Week with a Black-And-White Flourish and a Nod to Edgar Allan Poe 

Models walk the runway during the Thom Browne Fall 2024 fashion show at New York Fashion Week, February 14, 2024 in New York City. (AFP)
Models walk the runway during the Thom Browne Fall 2024 fashion show at New York Fashion Week, February 14, 2024 in New York City. (AFP)
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Thom Browne Closes Out NY Fashion Week with a Black-And-White Flourish and a Nod to Edgar Allan Poe 

Models walk the runway during the Thom Browne Fall 2024 fashion show at New York Fashion Week, February 14, 2024 in New York City. (AFP)
Models walk the runway during the Thom Browne Fall 2024 fashion show at New York Fashion Week, February 14, 2024 in New York City. (AFP)

Thom Browne, ever the master showman of American fashion, closed out New York Fashion Week on a blustery day with his own wintry landscape, blanketing the floor with fake snow and presenting his latest inventive designs to the words of Edgar Allan Poe’s chilling “The Raven.”

With celebrities like Janet Jackson and Queen Latifah in the front row Wednesday evening at a theater space on the far west side of Manhattan, Browne did what he does best, displaying feats of intricate tailoring and taking his time to weave a tale. His soundtrack narrator was Carrie Coon, star of “The Gilded Age,” who recited Poe’s bleak story of a lover mourning his lost love, Lenore, when he is visited by the black, thick-necked bird who constantly repeats, “Nevermore! Nevermore!”

Nobody in fashion is a better storyteller than Browne, now chairman of the Council of Fashion Designers of America, who over the years has placed his shows in mock cathedrals, magical gardens, even on faraway planets. As always, Browne’s models did not strut a runway but instead were players in his fantasy, walking deliberately and serenely around a wintry wasteland filled with snow and bare trees.

As the audience filed in, one of those “trees,” a man on stilts in a huge puffer coat, or gown, stood silently. Once the drama began, four young children emerged from that coat — as if he were a darker version of Mother Ginger from “The Nutcracker” — eventually sitting in the snow as the poem began.

“While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,” Poe’s words went, “as of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.” The procession began. Of nearly 50 looks, everything was in black-and-white — typical of Browne’s color discipline — with a little gold at the end.

The Poe theme was everpresent. In the first look, an imposing black headpiece made it seem like a raven was perched on the model’s head. In the second, black birds emblazoned a white coat that itself covered a black jacket and skirt.

It was a hugely inventive array of coats and jackets and skirts and trousers — and sometimes no trousers at all. There were solids and checks and prints. Some ensembles were fully formed and others had a deconstructed feel that is a longtime design theme of Browne’s. Each ensemble was a work of layered and intricate tailoring, the hallmark of a designer who recently was invited to show haute couture in Paris.

Some silhouettes were long and sleek, others boxy or cinched tightly at the waist. Bags included a number of variations of the Hector — a dog-shaped bag in honor of Browne’s pet of the same name. The bags were covered, said the label, by a removable layer of waterproof vinyl, also used on the shoes.

For whimsy, the word “Nevermore” from the poem was emblazoned on the backs of a few jackets. And there was a rare hint of skin for the label — a sheer black blouse covered with roses and a sheer skirt. As for the hair, it was hair-raising — literally. Many models wore two braids that defied gravity, reaching upward toward the sky.

“The Raven” hardly ends on a cheery note. Indeed, Coon ended it with frightening screams of “Nevermore!” But for Browne and his audience it was Valentine’s Day. And so, as he’s done before, Browne turned his post-show bow into a romantic gesture, carrying a huge red heart-shaped box, presumably of chocolates.

The crowd seemed to launch into a collective “Aww.” Then, as people prepared to file out into the freezing night, many first stopped to tromp on the fake snow and greet the tall human tree — who obliged by shaking his branches.


Michael Kors Inspired by Grandmother’s Wedding Gown for Fall-Winter Collection at NY Fashion Week

 A model presents a creation from the Michael Kors Fall/Winter 2024 collection during New York Fashion Week, in New York City, US, February 13, 2024. (Reuters)
A model presents a creation from the Michael Kors Fall/Winter 2024 collection during New York Fashion Week, in New York City, US, February 13, 2024. (Reuters)
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Michael Kors Inspired by Grandmother’s Wedding Gown for Fall-Winter Collection at NY Fashion Week

 A model presents a creation from the Michael Kors Fall/Winter 2024 collection during New York Fashion Week, in New York City, US, February 13, 2024. (Reuters)
A model presents a creation from the Michael Kors Fall/Winter 2024 collection during New York Fashion Week, in New York City, US, February 13, 2024. (Reuters)

The original location of the legendary Barney’s Department store in the Chelsea section of Manhattan set the stage for designer Michael Kors to present his Fall-Winter 2024 collection at New York Fashion Week.

Inside the mirrored lobby, the celebrity-rich crowd included actors Blake Lively, Katie Holmes, Rachel Zegler, Brie Larson, Gabrielle Union, and many others. Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour was also in attendance, as well as recording artist Kelsea Ballerini.

Before the show, Kors explained his mission for this collection during an interview with The Associated Press.

“When the world is upside down, I think my job is to make people feel more confident. It’s that simple,” Kors said.

His mother, Joan Kors, who died last year, had a strong influence in his life and career. And while her legacy remains with the designer, this time it was his grandmother who inspired him.

“I found my grandmother’s wedding gown and she got married in the 30s, and I started delving into the 30s because her dress looked so incredibly modern,” Kors said.

From there, he thought about old Hollywood.

“We saw the two sides of women’s personalities, we saw things that were very sensual and we saw Carole Lombard and Jean Harlow, and then we saw the great classic tomboys like (Marlene) Dietrich and Katharine Hepburn and the connective thread that all of that kept going,” Kors said.

The idea of creating the collection based on those elements and ideas impressed Rachel Brosnahan.

“I feel like any time you can inspire your art, whether it’s fashion or acting or music with any kind of emotion, it just makes that iconic and timeless and stand out. So I’m excited and I didn’t know that,” Brosnahan said.

The Emmy-winning star of “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” leaves town next week to take on the role of Lois Lane in “Superman: Legacy.”

“I guess the cat’s out of the bag. We’re doing our first table read next week in Atlanta,” Brosnahan said.

Once the runway show began, the crowd was treated to an assortment of tweed jackets, double-breasted coats, slit skirts, and sequined dresses. There were cashmere turtleneck sweaters, thick eyewear, and slender bags. With a few exceptions, the majority of designs employed a neutral color palette, with some gray, and lots of black.

“Black is definitely part of the collection. But there’s also the shock of wearing head-to-toe white in the winter. But then there are some warm tones of cappuccino and chocolate, lots of metallics, gunmetal, which I love,” Kors said.

Outside of the color scheme, Kors strives to create form fitting, sensual designs with roomy comfort.

“It is never just about wearing something skintight because for me it’s comfort for everything. But it’s definitely about showing the body too. That’s why today you will see models of every age and every size, which makes it interesting for me,” Kors said.

He added: “When they get dressed, they put something on, and it makes them feel ready to greet the day and feel their best self.”