New York Fashion Week–Report from the Front Row
Barbie’s 50th celebration show, George Chakra, and more from the runway
-Jennifer Goodkind, co-host of A Fashionable Life
I arrived under the tents for Fall Fashion Week 2009, on Saturday morning, and checked into the Press area, where I picked up my valuable pass that allows me lobby access. The tents on the weekend are considerably more mellow than the frenzied business week energy of Monday through Friday shows (more on that tomorrow!).
First stop: the Barbie Show. Looking at the monument to Barbie, which dominated the tents, makes me feel guilty for all the times I cut her hair off and treated her disrespectfully (I was a real tomboy). While I am not quite as old as Barbie–she’s celebrating her 50th!–I realize that we have actually grown up together. Barbie is an icon, a reliable bellwether of our own fashion evolution (the Barbie slogan splashed across IMG’s daily fashion publication The Daily, printed a thank you to all fashion week participants that read: “I’m simply plastic without you”).
Barbie is also a measure of America’s evolution of style. Whether you are Malibu Barbie, Foxy Barbie or Jewel Barbie, just as each girl or woman in a group of girlfriends might be the Samantha, Miranda, Charlotte or Carrie, there is a look or personal style that is each individual woman’s identifiable look. All the Barbies that make up the giant Barbie monument are all a little bit of us.
The other show I attended was George Chakra’s “Edition,” the Beirut-born designer’s first ready-to-wear collection. “Edition” is Mr. Chakra’s first foray into the ready-to-wear market after mostly designing couture for well-heeled Middle Eastern women as well as Parisian women; his only freestanding store is right in their backyard. The designer has dressed Tyra Banks and Jennifer Love Hewitt, who was seated in the front row.
The clothes were shades of metallic in grays, silver, iridescent and ombre. Taffeta, sequins and multi colored jewels. There was a futuristic vibe combined with a sculptural edge. Feminine but with a harder edge. The models’ makeup was natural and by M.A.C; hair, by Bumble and bumble, was done in loose buns like a lot of the actresses we’ve seen recently at the Golden Globes and SAG awards.
An aside: If George Chakra did an “Edition” Barbie, I would like to see her in his beautiful and graceful long organza skirt with a taffeta jacket.
Tomorrow is the Carolina Herrera show, and then I will be at the New York Public Library for Jill Stuart. Later, I’ll see the Australian designer Toni Maticevski at the Altman building. More to come as Fashion week revs up into full throttle!
Jennifer Goodkind is the co-host, with Jayne Chase, of A Fashionable Life (fashionableliferadio.com). They are fashion reporters for ABC News NOW, where they cover the red carpet, Fashion Week and the business of fashion.