Phelan

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SPACE Brand Phelan Weaves Motion and Femininity at New York Fashion Week

I learned a new word backstage before the Phelan show: diegetic. It’s a filmmaking term that, when applied to the audio realm, describes a “sound whose source is visible on the screen or whose source is implied to be present by the action of the film.”

In other words, a union of sound and vision.

We were invited to join Brooklyn-based designer Amanda Phelan and crew during rehearsal for her show, which was set to include a dance ensemble. As she described how the performance and sound accompaniment would underscore the actual collection for spring ’17, her partner, music designer Mike Dragovic, dropped the word on me as a way of explaining how the dancers and his soundtrack would double and juxtapose to suggest a sort of real and extra-real or hyperreal experience.

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Designer Amanda Phelan and choreographer Shannon Gillen watch dancers rehearse before the Phelan show on Thursday night.
All images by Carmen Daneshmandi

It takes a brave emerging designer to show an important collection inside a heady, mesmerizing theater concept. Most would fear the distraction and avoid the possibility of the audience focusing on anything other than the clothing. But as she’s shared with us in past seasons, Amanda is committed to forgoing a traditional runway in favor of performative presentations.

KEEP READING TO SEE HOW IT ALL FOLDS TOGETHER

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ALL POSTS SPACE Style

Fashion Party People: Nordstrom Designer Preview and Follow-Up Trunk Sale

The earrings, the coats, the pink tweed, the grassy greens. The slinky dresses, the bold silver jewels. The slouchy trousers, the gowns. The shoes!

And not just the ones on the runway, either—the crowd at Designer Preview always brings their own parade (just check out that front row below)—and this past Thursday night on the Seattle waterfront was an ultra-inspiring mix of what’s hot now, what’s hot on the horizon and what’s just hot no matter the season.

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The Missoni scene in Thursday night’s Designer Preview runway show. 

Missed it? Loved it and just want to relive it? Our 50-image lookbook detailing everything from the start of the party to the trunk show the next day is just the eye candy you need.

CLICK IN TO SEE EVERYTHING THAT HAPPENED IN THESE GORGEOUS IMAGES

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ALL POSTS SPACE

How Emerging Designers Win at Summer

Remember those “How I Spent My Summer Vacation” essays we had to write back in the day? We prompted eleven emerging and advanced designers from SPACE to get a jump on theirs.

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From Marques’Almeida—who took their entire team to Greece for an all-office off-site to end all off-sites—to Amanda Phelan, whose rooftop garden looks like a Brooklyn Zen Club Med, we had some of our favorite brands tell us about their version of fun and sun.

CLICK IN TO SEE WHAT THEY’RE DOING, DRINKING & WEARING

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ALL POSTS SPACE

SPACE Designer Phelan x Zendaya and Beyoncé

There’s a really good chance you spent this last weekend wrapping your mind around Beyoncé’s brand new Lemonade film, and if so you very likely took some more time to meditate on the outfits and give it up for the killer urban-earth-girl styling choices.

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A still from Bey’s Lemonade, via Phelan

Did you get stuck on Zendaya? Yeah, us too. The plaited and braided singer/dancer looks future-perfect and completely Zen in one of our favorite New York City-based SPACE brands, Phelan. It’s perfect synergy, too, because Amanda Phelan is also a dancer. Her refined and thoughtful relationship with movement and kinetics informs just about everything she does.

Of particular note: her radical knitwear of course, and the way it’s presented. For Amanda, it’s not about typical runway parades but narrative, riveting dance performances that express an entire world of style and emotion.

CLICK FOR PHELAN’S S/S ’16 DANCE/FASHION PRESENTATION

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Fashion Week SPACE

New York Fashion Week: SPACE Favorite Phelan’s Stirring Dance Performance

There’s so much to know about new-for-spring SPACE brand Phelan that it’s hard to know where to start.

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On one hand, it’s important to convey that designer Amanda Phelan comes from a pure art background; she is a lifelong dancer and is ardent about the form, and at Rhode Island School of Design she explored painting before turning to textiles.

But it’s equally important that you understand her design pedigree. Before breaking off on her own last year, she was responsible for the tactile, 3D knits that hallmarked so many of Alexander Wang’s collections. 

On Saturday in a small experimental theater on the Lower East Side, she quite literally wove those parts of herself together for a presentation that was as meaningful and stirringly beautiful as anything that stages like this will ever host. 

DANCERS AND DESIGNS LITERALLY HIT THE RUNWAY: READ MORE

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