MEXICO CITY — Fashion Week Mexico is fighting for the attention of global buyers and press, and this season did what many of its competitors have done: introduced awards.
At the inaugural Mexico Fashion Awards, sponsored by Lycra, Louis Verdad took the prize for best women's collection with his elegantly tailored grown-up girly looks. Verdad, who opened Los Angeles Fashion Week a week before, was a special invited guest. It was his first appearance at Fashion Week Mexico.
"I feel extremely flattered to return [to Mexico] triumphantly, as a leader," Verdad, who was born in the U.S. but raised in Mexico, said. "It's a huge compliment. I feel fulfilled as a person, as a designer and as a Latino."
The award for best runway show went to Julia y Renata, whose conceptual, irregularly cut line with cascading folds was inspired in part by the music of John Cage. "This season we're trying to re-create through cut and texture the surprise of an unexpected moment and the resolution of that moment through improvisation," explained Renata Franco, one-half of the designer sister team.
The Mexico fashion darlings, who have sold to Tracey Ross in Los Angeles and New York's Ash, will represent Mexico at the April 21 "world premiere" event for World Fashion Week, in Los Angeles. (World Fashion Week makes its debut in spring 2008.)
Clara González was named best new designer. The 21-year-old spent two years at Parsons School of Design (now Parsons The New School for Design) in New York and recently graduated from the Universidad Autónoma de Guadalajara. María Scheleske was named best accessories designer. The awards were decided by an independent jury of fashion judges including Toni Salamanca, editor in chief of Harper's Bazaar En Español; model-actress Martha Cristiana; fashion photographer Carlos Latapí, and designer Arturo Ramos.
The 16th edition of Fashion Week Mexico was held here Oct. 24 to 27 at the Camino Real Mexico hotel. With attendance nearing 16,000 for a total of 44 spring shows, organizers described it as the most successful edition to date.
"One of our biggest goals is to grow the concept of Mexican fashion," said José Andrés Patiño, director and executive producer of Fashion Week Mexico. "In terms of public interest, this was our most successful fashion week."The spring runway presentations ran the gamut from excellent (Verdad, Julia y Renata, Macario Jiménez, the Santo men's collection) to promising (the Goth-inspired Malafacha line, Peru's Jorge Luis Salinas, a host of designers making their debuts) to entertaining (Sergio Alcalá, Sweet & Dandy, Barbie by Viviana Parra).
Then there was the painful: Morgana's operatic Transylvania-inspired frocks and Maribel Gaytán's circus show complete with ballerinas, gymnasts, drummers and a guest model from Texas who looked like a cross between Morticia Addams and Jenna Jameson.
Indeed, avoiding such dichotomy is now a top priority for organizers.
"Over four days, we saw a great quantity and variety of runway shows in a single forum — from consecrated designers such as Louis Verdad or Macario Jiménez to totally new faces and children's collections," said Patiño. "Moving forward, we want to redefine that structure and offer different forums so that we can maintain the high-quality level of Fashion Week Mexico."
There was also one headline-grabbing last-minute cancellation. Veteran Mexican designer Armando Mafud, of hand-painted gown fame, showed up 40 minutes after his scheduled start time with his dresses still in suitcases. Upon arrival, the visibly agitated designer verbally and physically abused a backstage manager. When organizers decided to pull the plug on his show, Mafud became even more enraged. He tried to storm the runway area from the main entrance but was blocked by security. He then lodged accusations of foul play at show organizers and ultimately fled the complex, carrying on his tantrum with the national press in subsequent days.
"[Mafud] arrived late, unprepared and with a highly aggressive attitude," said Patiño. "I don't have the slightest doubt that we made the correct decision [in canceling his show]."
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews