What: Thom Browne fall fashion show.
Where: Skylight Modern during New York Fashion Week.
The set: Arguably American's quirkiest and most innovative designer, Browne always creates a setting for his runway shows that give a hints of what's in store. In this case, he transformed an open gallery space into a replica of Washington Square Park a century ago, with barren trees, dirt paths and park benches amid drawings of brick residences.
The show began with two men in Edwardian suits, who settled on a park bench as a parade of women in a hodgepodge of different looks recycled and stitched together from more expensive clothing trolled by. Browne told Womens Wear Daily that he was influenced by the Great Depression and want to explore the "creativity that can ensue from necessity." He said, “It’s about re-appropriating the clothing you loved when you bought them when you were rich in the Twenties.”
The look: A little like Scarlett O'Hara's gown of curtain fabric, Browne's collection is all about appearances, even if you have to appropriate clothing from a more prosperous period if your life. Heavily influenced by menswear fabrics, the collection stitches together parts of suits and tuxedo jackets into skirts and dresses of varying lengths, patching knees of slacks with denim and capes from old jackets.
While these looks are inventive, and bring up issues of saving the environment and the redistribution of income, the more practical styles riff off of Chanel bouclé fabric in dresses skirts, suits and coats that retain a modern edge.
There's no political statement in the dog-shaped handbags that several models carried. Fashioned after Browne's beloved daschund, they were the most talked-about aspect of the collection and couldn't help but draw amused glances.