Fashion Week

Jason Wu is All About Glamour, the Sartorialist’s Cover Girl is the Ultimate Tomboy, the Top Five Things at Suno, and How We’re Singlehandedly Keeping Backstage Boredom at Bay

Fashion Week Journal for Friday February 13

The first thing you learn about the fashion industry is that “hurry up and wait” is no joke. No one is even pretending to be punctual when it comes to showtimes, and let’s not even talk about models. Those girls. Their job is all about patience. Hair. Pause. Makeup. Pause. Walk-through. Pause. Pause. Pause. Repeat.

And so yesterday, during an epic couple of hours backstage before the Jason Wu show, we invented Blank Book. It’s a lot like Mad Libs, only, well, different. We’ll include one or two of these a day from here on out.

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Image of photographer Kelsey Bennett, shooting for Interview magazine, by Jessica Carter

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GIF animation and images by Jessica Carter

Bennett and swarms of other photography teams were documenting the hair and makeup rituals of the Wu show just as we were. Here’s our download.

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After staging, Jess and I were ushered up to the dressing room, where teams of stylist readied runway looks and Karlie Kloss, Fei Fei, Hanne, and all their gorgeous friends scissored around in killer show heels and street clothes waiting for the semi-dressed rehearsal. After the designer presided over those proceedings, he ducked backstage to chat with us for a few minutes.

Video by Jessica Carter

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Next on our docket was a trip uptown to Lincoln Center to talk with Julie Ragolia, fashion director for At Large magazine. If she looks familiar, check your book shelf; you probably own The Sartorialist, and she’s on the cover.

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Images by Jessica Carter

Since Ragolia is a menswear specialist, NYFW rolls a little differently for her. For instance: she was up at the Tents yesterday to check in on Orley, a men’s line issuing it’s first ever women’s collection.

The Brooklyn native says she’s super inspired by men’s fashion, but she’s also just really big on modernity and minimalism. She also tells us that she’s not into statement pieces (a refreshing statement, really) and is into utilitarianism, so everything in her wardrobe goes with everything else.

And that—the classic strong lines, the not-at-all-precious approach, the lean to the side of less—is what lands you on some of the coolest style blogs out there. Pro tip. (But it might not hurt to be of Russian and Italian descent and therefore in possession of the very dictionary definition of je ne sais quoi.)

Wearing: A vintage flight jacket, vintage K1 Dockers, a vintage chambray shirt and some very charming Prada oxford-style pumps.

Admires: Amelia Earhart, Patti Smith, young Mick Jagger.

Strategy: Does not own a full-length mirror, never plans her outfits. (See above re: utilitarianism and everything “matching.”)

Message: “I like things that don’t have an expiration date. When you mix them with current pieces, the look tells a larger story.

Follow: At Large on Instagram, Julie Ragolia on Instagram

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Final show of the second day: Suno. And it was glorious. Here are our top five takeaways:

1. Eyeliner doesn’t necessarily have to line the eyes. The Suno girls wore rectangles of black liquid on the outside of their eyes.

2. Let’s call it Turtleneck Dressing: The classic staple has enjoyed popularity of late but designers Max Osterweis and Erin Beatty managed to up the ante. Theirs, whether tucked into loose trousers or elongated into a sheaths, were both armor-like and sporty. The knit had a shellacked look; really, perhaps, the turtle’s shell.

3. Stripes aren’t always stripy. This is a line heavily associated with print, flowers and African textiles and motifs. There were florals in this collection, and a certain dress-over-pants floral look was key, but the pattern element came through in a linear way this time around, and, paired with black socks and chunky Nicholas Kirkwood heels, it was really powerful.

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4. Accessories should make you want to wear accessories. And now we do want barrettes and bar pins. Let’s do this for sure this fall. Sooner if you’re game.

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5. Not incidental: we ran into Cathy Horyn (not pictured) in the stairway, almost exactly 24 hours after she posted her ‘comeback’ review, “The Familiar Thrill of Returning to Fashion Week.” Horyn epitomizes intelligent fashion conversation, and it was a thrill to exchange even a few words with her in this setting.

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Images by Jessica Carter

—Laura Cassidy & Jess Carter

Follow Laura Cassidy and Jess Carter on Instagram