New York Fashion Week Spring/Summer ’09: Industrial Chic at Cynthia Rowley

September 12, 2008 • New York Fashion Week Spring '09

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Summary: Shown in an industrial loft (the seating was on metal bleachers) with glaring lights shining and blaring techno music playing, Cynthia Rowley presented looks ranging from sleek and monochromatic sheaths to black polished linen jackets and skirts that resembled grainy leather, and from graffiti-inspired embroidery layered under tulle to color-blocked satin. There was a definite cohesiveness to the collection, and the inspiration and point-of-view were easy to see. My favorite piece, called "striped scrim," was an off-white dress trimmed in black with a red print that resembled minnows swimming. There was a fluidity to that piece that made it move like it was created right on the model. Other looks had names like "clean slate" (a pristine white fitted sheath), "right angle" (a one-shouldered dress with a stripe announcing that right angle), "beaded armour" (a black dress with plates of black beading on the bodice), and "gravity defying back strap" (an off-white dress with black straps on the back that did in fact look to be defying gravity). When trying to decide exactly how I felt about this collection, one piece called "slim" came to mind. Constructed so perfectly and tailored so beautifully, there was no way it could be referred to as anything but "slim." Did I love every look? No. But did I appreciate the thought and understand the concept that went into every look?  Absolutely.

Color Palette: white, black, mint, red, navy, salmon, grey, aqua

Fabrics & Textures: polished linen, knit, tulle, silk, satin

Key Looks: polished linen riding jacket; graphic embroidered tank dress; elliptical waist dress; invisible décolletage dress; hand embroidered mesh dress with enameled eyes; beaded armour dress; black & white riding jacket with beaded stripe dress

– Alison Stewart

Photos: NYMag

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