Another NYFW has come and gone, and with it came a quite a few stand-out moments. As important (and stunning!) as the actual collections themselves are, designers are, as many have in the past, giving equal focus to the presentations — sets become immersive, models become interactive, and real creativity gets to be witnessed. From the moving to the bizarre to the straight-up unforgettable, here are our favorite NYFW moments, in no particular order.
An essential part of any runway show is its score. The ideal music will keep the audience energized and stoked for each look, and also reflect the mood of the collection. So when Eckhaus Latta sent its audience into an industrial warehouse deep in Bushwick for its runway experience, you knew things were going to get a little kooky. Eckahus Latta delivered, soundtracking their runway to the blaring, cacophonous sounds of a bunch of small, hip children hitting buckets with all their might. Comedian Catherine Cohen wrote a truly side-splitting review of the show in which she addressed the "trendy Montessori blanket children" and their music project. "The soundtrack of children banging on buckets is best described as…what’s the word for the opposite of Excedrin?" What's not to love!
NYFW can get hectic as hell when you're running from show to show, and few people were busier than Whoopi Goldberg. The woman was all over NYFW, sitting front row at so many killer shows like Rodarte's first NYFW appearance in two years to the avant-garde stylings of Gypsy Sport. And you know she came serving looks, like her head-to-toe magenta suit and hat when she attended Christian Siriano's presentation.
As stated above, the soundtrack to a runway is important as hell, which is exactly why I lost my damn mind when Kim Shui closed out her SS19 runway with "Reflection" from the objectively flawless Disney animated film Mulan. It was a nod to her own Chinese heritage and supported her collection with included traditional cheongsam silhouettes and silky fabrics.
Is NYFW even NYFW without a bit of scandal? During the Harper's Bazaar Icons Party, Cardi B and Nicki Minaj went at it after Nicki allegedly made a comment about Cardi's parenting. Cardi threw her shoe at Nicki, a scuffle ensued, and Cardi ulitmately ended up being escorted out of the party with a massive knot on her forehead that she rocked as if it were an exclusive accessory. Nicki left shortly after, but not before a quick writhing session for the paparazzi.
The excitement around the Pyer Moss show was palpable. For his last runway, designer and founder Kirby Jean-Raymond had a full gospel choir, and he delivered again, presenting his SS19 collection inspired by black life and black hardships in America. The moving presentation also included another surprise: an appearance from Atlanta rapper and dripper extraordinaire Gunna, who walked the runway.
School's back in session and everyone's getting detention thanks to Vaquera. The NYC line kept things freaky and fun for its SS19 presentation, pulling inspiration from traditional high school aesthetics and turning things on its head in typical Vaquera fashion — think deconstructed cheerleader uniforms, cinched dresses with football shoulder pads, and a full-bodied gown designed to look like a sentient graduation cap.
I'm not exaggerating when I say that Rihanna redefined NYFW. Her Savage x Fenty runway presentation hit all the markets of diversity and inclusivity, but beyond that it was a moment of total artistry. From the set design to the choreography to the makeup, every aspect of the show was boundary-pushing and exhilarating, proving that a runway show can be whatever the hell you want it to be. Rihanna also showed up with a bag on her head and somehow still managed to make it look unbelievably chic. Her mind!
Thumbnail via Rihanna's Instagram.