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Carolina Herrera, Brandon Maxwell Spring/Summer 2023 Show – The Hollywood Reporter

New York designers have learned a number of lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic, not only about how to stay in the luxury-focused fashion business amid a global standstill, but also the scope The importance of making choices is rooted purely in personal fulfillment versus a primary concern of profit. And if a designer is satisfied with a commercially successful collection, it’s probably no coincidence.

That’s how both Brandon Maxwell and Carolina Herrera creative director Wes Gordon approached the Spring/Summer 2023 collection they launched this week. Gordon’s presentation at The Plaza exudes unflinching joy in every element of it, from New York’s iconic location to the accents on bright floral prints – the subject of which is inspired by the 1911 novel Frances Hodgson Burnett Secret garden – and especially the show’s soundtrack, a mix of Barbra Streisand’s most famous cinema and Broadway hits.

“I don’t want hipster EDM music, I want fun music that girls will love,” says Gordon The Hollywood Reporter after the show. Indeed, it’s impossible not to notice that even Karlie Kloss, one of the catwalk’s champion walkers, seems to find another device in her walk as Streisand’s vocals begin to sing the track. word theme Hello Dolly!

“Literally, from the first note, I knew this was going to be one of the fun, uplifting and empowering collections we’ve ever seen from Wes,” said Broadway producer Jordan Roth, who owned and operated company of August, said. The Wilson Theatre, where Lea Michele is currently living out her dream eight times a week as Fanny Brice in Funny girlrole that made Streisand famous in 1964.

“Don’t Rain on My Parade” actually feels a bit better as Gordon’s collection hits the runway, where celebrities include Guardians of the Galaxy Actress Karen Gillan, singers Ellie Goulding, Martha Stewart and Sabrina Carpenter sat in the front row. Gordon was inspired by Burnett’s novel not only because it was his mother’s favorite book and she read it to him when he was a child, but it also allowed him to completely fall in love with colors and flowers. “The secret ingredient in the collection comes from the black injection you’ve seen throughout, a note between softness and romance,” he explains. “I’m not worried about following trends – instead I’m doubling down on who I am, who the house is, and just creating works that have no justification for beauty.”

A model walks the runway at the Carolina Herrera fashion show during New York Fashion Week: The Shows in September 2022.

Fernanda Calfat / Getty Images for NYFW: The Shows

Five floral prints form the centerpiece of the collection: “the seeds in my garden,” as Gordon calls them. These cheerful bouquets feature bright hues of pink, yellow, and light blue mixed with splashes of black in the shade creating a distinctly Upper East Side feel. Silhouettes range from a crisp white shirt and black trousers with a floral belt to a lacy bra with an ankle-length A-line skirt and a beautiful mix of a long-sleeve striped shirt paired with Yellow floral evening dress with pockets. “I take the origins of five prints and blow some of them on top of a chiffon, shrink some or take a detail from another,” explains Gordon. “Many of them read as completely different things, even though they are the same anemone flower.”

Gordon also enjoyed the shoulder-slung fresh floral corsets on several dresses, including a red silk stun dress. If the dress looks familiar, that’s because Kate Hudson wore the design two days before her catwalk debut when she appeared on the red carpet at the Toronto International Film Festival. “There’s always been a feeling that revealing a collection has to be a big secret, but I don’t think that’s our world anymore,” says Gordon. “If something is beautiful, then share it. I am honored and happy that she wore it the day before our show.”

Happiness is also synonymous with peace, and Brandon Maxwell is more than ready to convey that sensibility with his latest collection. The celebrity designer who started out as a stylist for Lady Gaga and other high-powered stars, he said, is looking for a quieter life — and why not? Lately, his schedule has been bursting with projects, from his time as a guest designer for FILA, to a tennis clothing line that hit stores in August and feels a bit dated. classic and modern, as well as his work as the creative director of Walmart’s fashion brands, which debuted in February. “Next week we will also start filming the TV show,” added Maxwell, referring to season 20 of Bravo. Project runwayhe stars alongside Kloss, fellow designer Christian Siriano, and Elle Editor-in-Chief Nina Garcia.

“It is such a joy to be able to go to work and be a part of someone’s journey,” Maxwell said of the reality competition show. “I know it’s a TV show, but the filming and execution is very realistic and very human. And to be honest, I don’t feel far away from the place [the contestants] so it’s a great pleasure to be a part of what they’re going through. “

So it’s understandable why Maxwell might be eager to move out of Manhattan so he can more enjoy the existence of his loved ones during his break. The designer quickly discovered that the early morning hours, filled with birdsong and shades of dawn, were not only relaxing but also very inspiring. “That period between 5 and 7 a.m. has been the most restorative of my life over the past few months,” he said. CHEAP backstage after his show.

Lavender, which Maxwell calls “a very peaceful color but also without a sense of urgency,” becomes the central theme, also used to illuminate his presentation space, a series of rooms. on display at Christie’s auction house in Midtown. From the outset, sunrise tones mixed with neutrals created a faded blend like wide-leg wheat trousers with a shimmering apricot gown with clear sequins, as well as bright sequins. an asymmetrical skirt that dropped to one side and wide legged pants teamed with a strapless top embellished with black sequins and gold buttons.

In the end it’s a great combination of polish and ease. “You never want to lose the DNA and core of the brand, it’s a very polished look,” says Maxwell. “But you also want to infuse it into where you are right now, which for me is a bit more comfortable, I guess.”

Maxwell’s flowers represent that same comfort, never feeling precious or forced; rather, a print evokes thoughts about the light-sensitive paper children use to create nature prints in elementary school – this doesn’t mean they look childish. Instead, they feel luxurious and natural in their simplicity. “Where I live now, it brings back a lot of memories of where I grew up,” explains Maxwell, referring to his Texas roots. “I think much of the peace and quiet has spawned thoughts about how when life moves a little slower, the future seems uncertain, and I dream of working in fashion. With that in mind, I want some things to feel a little less obvious.:

A floral-print strapless strapless dress was one of the collection’s best-sellers, as was the silver sequined mermaid gown embellished with pink, lavender and moss green sequins. – in case Maxwell’s red carpet fans worry he won’t have. the pieces are ready. “Because I have been a stylist for many years, I think that will always be in my head, even if it is not something I am consciously planning,” he notes. . “Right now I’m really focused on saying what I mean through the collection; if that turns out to include a tunic, that’s great, but if not, that’s okay too. The past few years have been difficult, but right now, I feel really grateful.”

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