NEW YORK — The message will be in the material at EarthPledge's FutureFashion show at Gotham Hall Thursday.
In this case, the material is natural. Hemp, natural silk, organic cotton and vegetable-tanned leather are a few of the elements used by high-profile designers in looks intended to highlight sustainable apparel manufacturing.
"The idea is giving the designers this creative project and asking, 'If you were to make something sustainable, what would it look like?'" said Julie Gilhart, vice president of fashion merchandising at Barneys New York, who helped organize the event. "It's to get the designers involved in the project and increase everybody's awareness. The whole green thing doesn't mean you have to forsake design or quality or anything."
Gilhart said she raised the stakes this year by inviting international designers to join the project. The domestic contingent includes Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, Donna Karan, Marc Jacobs, Narciso Rodriguez, Derek Lam, Michael Kors and Threeasfour. European houses such as Versace, Bottega Veneta, Burberry, Givenchy, Marni, Martin Margiela, Stella McCartney and Yves Saint Laurent also participated.
The runway show has some high-powered industry veterans working behind the scenes. Fabien Baron designed the invitations and is doing the graphics; Alex de Betak, who designed the set using reclaimed wood, is producing, and Brana Woolf is styling. Barneys, Lexus Hybrid Living and Pure & Natural are among the sponsors.
The designers have had differing amounts of experience with sustainable materials. McCartney is selling an organic collection at Barneys, Behnaz Sarafpour last season included a few items in her show that used organic materials, Duro Olowu uses recycled fabrics and Moschino was talking about the environment 20 years ago.
"Some people you'd think wouldn't be so excited about it, like Versace, but they were really excited about it," Gilhart said.
EarthPledge, which has a collection of more than 600 sustainable materials, sent each designer a sample book and ended up supplying many of the designers, said Leslie Hoffman, executive director of EarthPledge. "The thing I see that's phenomenal is how far the textile industry has come," she said. "What I see going forward will hopefully be an explosion of new products, new chemistry, new techniques for dyeing and printing more natural or sustainably grown product."The designs will be on display in Barneys' Madison Avenue windows and could travel to the retailer's stores around the country, Gilhart said. "We're not selling the looks," she added. "The designs are being kept intact to inspire people."
@fearofgod and @maxfieldla have teamed up on a pop-up installation. The store, located in the gallery space across from Maxfield’s Melrose Ave location, is the site of the brand’s House of God pop-up in which Fear of God founder @jerrylorenzo has created a church-inspired installation. A dozen vintage church pews sit in front of an LED screen playing 90s gospel singers in an effort to re-create an environment akin to a Southern Baptist Church, Lorenzo explained. Read more about the pop-up on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: Jennifer Johnson)
Known for his sleek, sophisticated American glamour, Norman Norell is the subject of an upcoming exhibition at @fitnyc. “Norell: Dean of American Fashion,” which runs from February 9 through April 14, will feature approximately 100 ensembles and accessories. His best work is exemplified by the designer’s glittering “mermaid” gowns frosted with thousands of hand-sewn sequins – like the one pictured. (📷: William Helburn) #wwdfashion
For pre-fall 2018, @balmain didn’t let go of the glitz. A crystal embroidered baseball jacket priced at around $40,000 hangs in the “couture” section of the brand’s first men’s pre-collection. Sporting the words “Balmain Army” across the back, the item took around two months to make. “When it was completed, it was like Christmas, it was like, ‘It’s done, it’s exactly what I wanted,’” said Balmain’s creative director @olivier_rousteing during a tour of the collection in a Paris showroom on Monday. #wwdfashion
Eighty degree temperatures and outdoor installations at the annual Art Basel Miami Beach called for bright, elevated beachwear. See more street style pictures on WWD.com. #theyarewearing #ABMB (📷: @lifeinreverie)
Following September’s emotional tribute to her brother Gianni, Donatella Versace wanted to bring the spring show’s deep sense of intimacy to her @versace_official pre-fall collection. Donatella found inspiration in Versace Palazzo in Milan and from Gianni’s opulent apartment. Archival patterns and new motifs were splashed on silk shirtdresses and fitted jersey frocks. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com. #wwdfashion
Demna Gvasalia continues to shake up the Paris fashion calendar — and experiment with new runway timetables for his @vetements_official brand. WWD has learned that Vetements plans to stage its next coed show for the fall 2018 season on January 19 during Men’s Fashion Week in the French capital. Details about the timing and venue have not been confirmed — stay tuned on WWD.com to catch the latest. #wwdnews (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo)
@zacposen's go-to holiday gift? Cookies! "I'll usually bake cookies and send them as a gift," said the designer, who recently released his cookbook "Cooking With Zac: Recipes from Rustic to Refined." Get the recipe for his Brown Butter-Chocolate Chip Cookies via link in bio 🍪🍪🍪 #wwdeye #cookingwithzac
For @monsemaison’s pre-fall 2018 collection, Fernando Garcia and Laura Kim honed in on the brand’s many signatures — men’s wear, which was tweaked and feminized through deconstruction, proportion play and lots of bare shoulders. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
On Friday night, @yohjiyamamotoofficial received the Design for Asia Lifetime Achievement Award in Hong Kong. The 75-year-old designer has been celebrated for many years and is best known for his dark and avant-garde tailoring. “In my long career, in design, architecture, [I’ve been to] so many parties, this is the very first time that I have such a warm feeling, I really appreciate this,” Yamamoto said. #wwdfashion (📷: @dominiquemaitre)