Posts tagged Simon van Kempen

Alex McCord, Blog #2 from NYFW!


Here’s what I love about fashion week – the opportunity to see what’s new and exciting from creative people we know, and discovery of designers we didn’t know before.

Friday was a “hit it hard” work day, after which we stopped in at Magalis Garcia’s presentation.  Her work is gorgeous; I wore quite a bit of it on our show, and I was thrilled for her that Vogue attended!  My favorite detail is her obsession with one-shouldered dresses, one that I share…  On the way home, we stopped in for a sec to Christian Siriano & Brad Walsh’s after-party to say hi – life moves so fast that we realized we hadn’t seen them in person since last fashion week.  I was thrilled to see that Brad has started a line of rings, tried one on and can’t wait to see more!

Haute Hippie

Saturday was hectic – we began at Georges Chakra, whom we have grown to love over the last year.  My favorite pieces were the mohair-draped tops over trousers, and the cocktail dresses with sexy mesh cutouts.  I love cutouts covered in mesh – you get the low-cut wow factor without worrying about having a wardrobe malfunction.  Next was a quick run downtown to Loris Diran, a good friend and great designer.  I really loved his use of copper tones, the foiled silk shirt over wool trousers with a copper thread in them.  His menswear was really beautiful and wearable – Simon kept elbowing me during the show,which is van Kempen sign language for “I love that.”  There was a lace showstopping gown which I’m going to wear somewhere, and we were off and back uptown for lunch.  Next was the Academy of Arts University show, which I love attending.  There were 6 graduating designers showing, and all were fearless and fabulous, from Marina Solomatnikova’s suede suits to Steven Oo’s amazing knitwear.  As the sun set it was off to Zang Toi, who thrilled us with his intricate beading and lush glamour.  Charcoal and purple cashmere were the signature looks of this collection, with slick hair under fedoras – what a beautiful show.  Finally, we stopped in at the Suno & Haute Hippie presentations – Suno’s eclectic looks with the mixture of texture and color were to die for, although I might not braid my hair up so high!  Haute Hippie was fun – they sell on 5F in Bergdorf’s, but even if you don’t have a Bergdorf’s budget you can recreate these awesome looks with classic pieces from your closet (or from Second Time Around!)  My favorite look was a solid tank top with ropes of pearls over a ruffly skirt.


Sunday was much calmer, though we learned a lesson.  Never, ever leave a fashion show, because the gossip rags will kill you.  After arriving early at Lela Rose and finding we didn’t have seat assignments, we opted to leave and use the hour to take care of something totally non-fashion week related, versus waiting to be assigned seats.  Suddenly gossip hounds gleefully reported that we were thrown out.  Oy.  Lesson learned – if they offer to put you backstage and seat you later, stay.  What was the thing we had to take care of?  Simon’s sister had called from Budapest – her friend’s cousin in Queens hadn’t been heard from in weeks and they wanted us to make sure she was still alive.  We drove out to Jackson Heights, knocked on her door while fervently hoping this wasn’t going to turn into an episode of Law & Order and confirmed that yes, she was fine, just hadn’t called home in a while.  Mission accomplished; now back to fashion.  We had the more-or-less obligatory brunch at the Bryant Park Grill and then attended Diego Binetti’s show at Exit Art and fell in love with his 20’s movie star detailing, and sunburst fabrics.

Overall we’re seeing throwbacks to old school glamour, which is refreshing.  As I said to somebody last night, I think with the economic situation we’ve all been living through, designers wanted to cheer us up with lush metallic colors, velvety luxurious fabrics, mohair and vibrant mixes of texture and layering.  Most, if not all, these looks can be duplicated at your neighborhood Second Time Around.  So far, so good!  ~Alex


Alex McCord blogs from Fashion Week!

Alex and Simon enjoy Fashion Week!


Fashion week began with a snow day!!  Our two boys, aged 4 and 6, love clothes almost as much as my husband and I do, but they love snow more.  I took them outside after lunch and we made a fashion week snowman – Frosty the Fashionista – whom I thought looked a bit like Patrick McDonald from Bravo’s Launch My Line, complete with artfully tilted fedora.  Later that afternoon, I ran over to the Mott Street store with old STA friend Derek Warburton to play in the racks and choose a few outfits for fashion week.  This season I decided that I’d either wear the designer whose show I’m seeing, or something from Second Time Around, and the first look we pulled was a really adorable pink satin and black lace Nanette Lepore, topped with a gray suede jacket by Torn.  Why this outfit in the middle of a snowstorm?  My snow boots are pink and black leopard, and you never know whether there will be time to change before the photographers find you…so just in case I wanted to match.

First stop was John Bartlett’s show, and I really couldn’t wait to see it as not only do Simon and I love his menswear, but this was the first time in years that he’d offered a women’s collection as well.  The work for both genders was polished, elegant and so very wearable, with sassy touches such as a leather t-shirt under a scarf and metal studs on the cuffs of a sweater.  As we waited for the show to start I spent a few minutes staring at Simon who had been decked out in head-to-toe Bartlett with a long coat and vest over a turtleneck – very nice!  After congratulating John and catching up with the other Simon at the show (Doonan) we headed out into the blizzard that ate New York.  5 minutes, 10 minutes…where, oh where is the car?

Frosty the Fashionista!

During fashion week, everyone shuttles from venue to venue and you don’t always get to eat properly, so the money you save on meals is well spent on a car service to get you from A to B.  In this case, the car was stuck in New Jersey, so after a few minutes of Simon valiantly trying to hail a cab, our friends Joe and Ed from decided to get their car out of a nearby lot and just drive.

The snow continued to fall and we had a near miss with an unleashed dog who couldn’t see where the sidewalk ended and the road began…thank goodness we missed him as it would be a very bad idea to start fashion week with a pelt!  We arrived at the GenArt presentation featuring four new designers, and were thrilled with the winning collection by WesFeld utilizing recycled plastics.  After admiring the eco-friendly collections and chatting with friends, we repaired to Morimoto for some tasty Japanese before putting the boots back on, finding the car (finally!) and heading home.


Spent most of the day working, but did catch the ClaudiaE show on the way home – she’s a brand new designer who is very accessible to STA shoppers.  Her looks were a bit Annie Hall crossed with sexy young things – think long button down shirts, perfectly cut, over fishnet stockings, knee socks and heels.

Stay tuned for the next chapter – the weekend is always fun as Simon is able to attend shows with me!