With inflation riding high, layoffs plaguing several industries and consumers tightening their belts, trepidation is in the air as NYFW inches closer.
So what will the clothes look like?
A quick glance through WWD’s archive at the fall 2009 collections, which debuted in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, revealed designers are split when it comes to dressing for recession.
This publication wrote at the time that, “Michael Kors came down firmly on the side of elegant practicality over indulgence,” something he is poised to repeat with a show on Feb. 15. inspired by the imitable style of influential women: Gloria Steinem, Yoko Ono, Tina Turner and Jane Fonda.
WWD also reported that Naeem Khan dazzled, “with some of the most perfectly cut, lavishly embellished gowns and short little dresses in town.” Celebrating 20 years this season, the designer’s Valentine’s Day presentation will be a love letter to his clientele who, not ones to economize, allow him to create intricate pieces like the red feathered one he’s chosen to preview here.
Luar’s Raul Lopez appears to have money on his mind as well, safeguarding the profits he’s earned from selling out of his Ana bags by investing in gold. The 2022 Accessories Designer of the Year submitted an assortment of chains — along with the quote: “elegance can be bought” — as the inspiration behind his show, which nabbed the coveted closing spot on Feb. 15.
But before then, the likes Prabal Gurung, Silvia Tcherassi, Pamella Roland, Willy Chavarria and Area will attempt to offer respite from the economic unease by referencing the natural world. All sorts of vegetation, animalia, geological motifs and celestial wonders cover their mood boards this season.