The ongoing democratization of fashion through social media and other direct to consumer communication pipelines means that NYFW is no longer an ultra-exclusive showcase only available to the storied fashion houses. And thus, each season allows numerous independent and smaller designers the opportunity to present their collections to an audience eager to learn about something new. With the shows coming to a conclusion yesterday, we wanted to take the opportunity to highlight five wonderful emerging designers we encountered throughout the week that you should definitely keep on your radar for the year ahead.
5 Emerging Designers Who Put Their Stamp on NYFW Fall 2023
ZIMO's showcase for the Fall 2023 season was a commentary on hoardersim, and took attendees into a space featuring models as they went through numerous phases of layering. For the collection, ZIMO—led by designer Zimo Yan—used dead-stock materials like vintage bed sheets, up-cycled buttons, sweaters, yarns, and the brand's signature up-cycled pajamas.
In addition to the showcase of the clothing, the presentation featured a backroom performance meant to represent a hoarder's space. Sitting amid the room—cluttered with numerous materials and scraps—was an elderly woman actively crocheting small pieces for the guests throughout the evening.
Despite the themes of disorder and disarray, each look for the collection was clearly meticulously tailored and comprised of disparate but cohesive materials.
Building on the beloved IP he's been working on for years, Danny Cole—the man behind Creature World—is officially releasing his first solo clothing exhibition for the brand. Similar to the NFT project of the same name, Cole's work is a psychedelic exploration of creatures and the kaleidoscopic land they inhabit.
For the launch of Collection 1: Migration, Cole displayed a series of large-scale sculptural installations which each housed a real-life creature—a model tasked with performing a repetitive task or sustained in an uncanny stasis for the duration of the event.
The first Creature World garments from last year were a collab with advisry; this collection marks the very first solo clothing launch for Cole, which will release later today at creature.world.
BruceGlen is just simply a joy to behold. The runway show kicked off with a performance from Grammy award-winning gospel singer Naomi Raine, followed by a vibrant and colorful runway show anchored by the design of twins Bruce and Glen Proctor. The Fall 23 collection entitled, “The Sermon," was inspired by the twins' earliest childhood memories in a small baptist church on Naylor Road in South East Washington, D.C. Both Bruce and Glen are ministers in addition to being designers.
Their sustainability initiative with Resonance is also a unique aspect of the brand; they build up no excess inventory of products, instead opting to create pieces on a made to order basis to reduce waste.
“The Sermon” was an ode to 90s church fashion, the black woman and triumph through faith. It was a beautiful show, entirely free of the hyper-snobbishness that pervades so much of fashion; it was a celebration.
With every collection, Christian Juul Nielsen manages to integrate his complete and utter technical design mastery from his couture background into exciting and accessible garments. This year's showcase featured a variety of beautifully draped and voluminous dresses constructed of a rain jacket-adjacent material, punctuated by elements of lace and flashy color.
For this season, Nielsen wanted to imagine hypothetical American royalties and the garments they would don. "So this collection is very much a play on that. How would it be if there were American royalties?" he told ONE37pm.
It's wonderful to witness Christian experiment with his more personal label AKNVAS each year while simultaneously effortlessly displaying his more traditional background with houses like Dior, Herve Leger and more.
If you'd like to hear a bit more about how Christian put this collection together, read our recent interview with him on his process.
Similar to BruceGlen, Colin LoCascio looked to his upbringing for inspiration for this show. Described as "a sensory exploration" of the designer's childhood, the show built on vidid and euphoric flashes of memory culminating in a dream-like collection.
The show frequently invoked flower imagery, a recurring theme throughout LoCascio's work since launching the label in 2020. In many of the myriad pieces from the vibrant presentation, LoCascio explicitly referenced some ubiquitous childhood experiences: catching fireflies, carousel rides, and trips to the Botanical Gardens.
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