Now in its sixteenth year, Gen Art produced its spring fashion show over the weekend at an event chockablock full of corporate sponsorships — a win-win situation for cash-strapped young designers and brands looking to make an in with the tastemaker set. Hosted by young actress Erika Christensen, this year the lineup included six women’s lines — William Okpo, Ace and Jig, Sunghee Bang, Eighteenth, Jennifer Chun and Ann Yee — and lone men’s wear designer Baron Wells. The strongest contenders were Ace and Jig for their vintage surf-girl, à la Gidget, meets Willi Wear designer Willi Smith, with gauzy layered items such as a loose dress or tunics paired with contrasting-print T-shirts and shorts. Other standouts: Sunghee Bangs’ leather wear — deconstructed jackets and vests with zipper details worn with slinky leggings, loose T-shirts and chunky knits — as well as Ann Yee’s easy flowing looks and fresh take on knitwear. Also of note were Baron Wells’ modern preppy pieces, including outerwear, and Jennifer Chun’s demure utilitarian chic mode. The accessories designers featured were Falconiere, known for chain epaulets and leather collars; Collina Strada, a leather goods label with a South American feel; Osborn, which showed quirky men’s and women’s shoes made in Guatemala, and Wool and the Gang, a DIY knitting concept store.

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