Is it OK for a designer to go wherever the wind blows, aesthetically speaking? Victor Alfaro has been quietly figuring that out over the past few seasons, as he’s ping-ponged from sporty polish to superchic polish to raw, Japanese-influenced denim, followed by Victoriana crossed with modern street.
Now, he’s in gender-fluid street territory, shooting his fall women’s collection on girls and guys in Bushwick for a gritty Berlin-industrial Brooklyn vibe. He captured that mood and did it well with statement coats, such as an oversize denim robe coat with the word “Hope” and a dove embroidered on it, a hoodie with a peace sign, a jacquard bomber shown over a sweater with a star and the word “wish,” and dressed-up track pants. There were long, loose floral dresses that could swing grungy or pretty, depending on how they were styled.
Alfaro, like so many of his peers, was impacted by November’s election. “It’s going to become cliché, but I was struggling with how relevant what we do is,” he said, noting that a friend reassured him that dressing women and making them feel good is important. Aside from that, he said he’s looked around the stores he’s been in and didn’t feel that the perfect, polished stuff is what women want to wear. The stores are asking for emotion, novelty, a message. Alfaro knows he’s been here and there in terms of the look he’s presented and his business is probably small enough to get away with experimentation. A key part of the fall collection were select words and phrases he embroidered or printed on various items: happy, always, love and be you.
For fall, he was following his own advice.