Comfy, Sexy, Cool: The Relaxed Attitude of #NYFW

Referencing the ‘90s in shape, plaid, and attitude, many of the spring collections shown in New York carried the torch for those simpler times. The casual quality was pervasive through athletic wear and tissue thin cardigans, spaghetti strap slip dresses and mostly-unbuttoned men’s sleep shirts. The attitude was present, as well, in the way it was all worn. The way Liv Tyler looked in Empire Records is how we all want to feel when dressing next season, albeit more sophisticated, as we’ve appropriately (sometimes) wizened with age.  


The crop tops are there, but it’s about more than that. At Altuzarra, models were sent down the runway dressed totally déshabillé, with skirts slit up to there, and shirts unbuttoned to the navel, which impressively managed to be un-reminiscent of Jennifer Lopez in Versace, if you can believe. Tailoring and opaque fabrics may have had something to do with that.


Alexander Wang showed similar skin but oppositely; his girls wore pajama shirts unbuttoned Cholo-style, with only the buttons at the top secured, and paired with what else but boxer shorts.


Nolan Bellavance made sure his models were covered – nothing a breeze could deconstruct. But one look featured a robe-like jacket, questionably appropriate for outdoor wear – though as a fan, I’ll be testing its limits on the streets.

Photo by Rodin Banica

Coupled with comfortable shoes and decidedly undone hair (bedhead, roll-in-the-hay-esque, straight from the shower wet – take your pick,) for spring the aim is to be comfortably, sexy, cool. In the offerings presented to us last week in New York, feeling, looking, and being comfortable and sexy will be anything but a struggle.  

Fashion Week: The Collections from Saturday

The weather this week has been ideal for walking between shows, many of which were situated on Manhattan’s west side.

At Kanye West approved Louise Goldin, athletic gear reigned, though in less literal terms than the clothes shown at Rag & Bone. Still, black and white athletic shorts and a grey tennis dress told that part of the story clearly. Dusty pink and turquoise – California sunset colors – dotted the rest of the collection. As we decline ever so comfortably into a more casual civilization, at least our choices of athletic wear are made to be appropriate for the street.

Alexander Wang’s logomania took hold with the help of technical fabric innovations that weren’t prevalent when the trend first reared its head in the ‘90s. Laser cut leather showcased the designer’s name in repetition on almost every single look in the latter part of the collection, creating a sort of streetwise lace. Though Wang has committed to Balenciaga, this collection was to show us, his dedicated fans, that he has not decamped from downtown cool in his eponymous line.

photo via @fashionlovebox

Every bit of fabric in the Tibi spring collection flowed beautifully around the body without ever becoming so clingy as to be suggestive, the result of which perhaps had to do with the natural materials used in the collection. From leather, silk, and breezy mesh, modern, minimal, feminine shapes emerged. The embellished shoes, a continuation of the Birkenstock reinvigoration ignited by Celine last season, looked comfortable and covetable. Considering midriffs, logomania, tearaways and Birkenstocks, it seems we’re all longing for the simpler ‘90s in some way. The collection pieces all looked sublimely easy to wear, as if any girl with preference for any style could find a piece from Tibi to love.


At Altuzarra, liquid gold and silver, or fabric that gave the impression of melted gilding, flowed and poured ethereally over models Maria Bradley, Josephine Le Tutour, and Sasha Luss. The skirts, paired with ultra fine Henley tees, communicated the ease with which Joseph Altuzarra meant the collection to be worn. Luscious materials paired with slight disarray create the perfect combination for a commanding, sensual presence, all the while leaving the wearer extremely comfortable in her garb.

Meanwhile, at Milk, a frenzy of presentations took place. The room that held CFDA Incubator designer Jonathan Simkhai was packed tight; it took some deft navigation to catch a glimpse of the clothes. Once settled in front of the models, visions of perforated leather bombers, easy leather skorts (more evidence the ‘90s are back,) and athletic-inspired shapes (again) unfolded.

New(ish)comer Bellavance seems to understand simple and light layering. A robe-like and weightless jacket floated briefly as the model walked by, creating again the sense that we’d like to wear our indoor clothes out, so make them comfortable and chic, please.


With almost half of fashion week behind us, there’s still a lot more to see. Keep up with us and go to for more.

Main photo: Altuzarra