Burnett NY Resort 2020

For a brand that has been on the market barely two years, Burnett NY is making a lot of traction. With collections already in Bergdorf Goodman and other high-end retailers, Burnett NY is on its way.

For its first resort collection, Burnett NY created a luxury collection for that busy professional woman who might be taking a R&R, not only in a temperate climate, but also in a major city or the American Rivera, The California coastline. For resort 2020 the design duo or Emily Burnett and Sterling McDavid have placed their customer in the glow of western sunsets, Mediterranean-like architecture, and the white stucco rooftops of Santa Barbara.

Though their customer may not be doing any work or going to corporate meetings at their resort destination, by their apparel anyone can tell that Burnett NY woman is a high-powered alpha type. And the power suit is a key element of this resort 2020 collection. There is the outstanding metallic power suit and there is also the pearl crepe blazer with embroidered yoke with pearl crepe pant with tie-belt.

Like many luxury brands for the resort 2020 season Burnett NY’s resort collection includes a significant number of jumpsuits. However, Burnet NY’s resort jumpsuits are more sophisticated and elegant than in most other resort 2020 collections. Particular standout is the ocean crepe jumpsuit with ocean crepe blazer.

Images courtesy of Burnett NY

The citrus palette of lemon and peach, pastel seafoam blue and nudes that define this collection is aptly applied to softly tailored suits with fluid lines in crepe and linen. There are also architecturally pleated chiffon gowns that are perfect for an evening out. And the day dresses make for a complete resort 2020 wardrobe.

William S. Gooch

Missoni Resort 2020

In case you haven’t noticed, the fashion industry loves looking back to other fashionable eras for inspiration. The 1970s appears to the era that the fashion industry is currently having a love affair with. And when it comes to resort collections, no fashion period correlates to easy, breezy, fun-loving times than the 1970s. And isn’t that what resort collections are supposed to be about. After all, resort season conjures up images of comfortable, but fashionable clothes.

No other current fashion brand can distill a 70s design aesthetic better than Missoni., particularly an early 70s perspective. Mission has set a standard for their bohemian, crazy quilt-patterned collections. And their 2020 resort collection is no exception.

Inspired by 70s icons Lauren Hutton and Elsa Perretti, this free-spirited 2020 resort collection draws heavily from familiar archival motif that have been reworked to create new patterns. There are reworked zebra motifs, revisited leopard prints, multicolored foliage, and Missoni’s artsy camouflage. This kaleidoscope of reworked motifs is juxtaposed against the brand’s signature bold geometrics. 

This collection is designed for that sophisticated urbanite who effortlessly elegant and primed for adventure. This collection marries and equatorial tropical mood with the essential wardrobe staples of an urban dweller. Jacquard mini dresses are worn also as vests on fluid maxi dresses. Shirts take center stage from the bowling styles shown in a patchwork of different materials to the fitted silhouettes with roomy sleeves and the more classic options punctuated with knitted details. They are paired with high-waisted pants or with the new skirt pants injected with an easy-chic attitude. Micro aviator jackets crafted from sartorial fabrics introduce a mannish touch, while the classic tuxedo comes in a knitted version enriched with metallic accents.

Photos courtesy of C&M Media

And like many brands this season, Missoni has created their version of the mini bags, designed in collaboration with Iacobella Gaetani. Can anyone say, ”Put it in your peace pipe, smoke it on up.”

William S. Gooch




Bibhu Mohapatra Resort 2020

There are many positives things you could say about Bibhu Mohapatra’s fashion collections—they are fashion-forward, elegant and chic, and ready made for the red-carpet. All the platitudes aside, what Bibhu Mohapatra has managed to accomplish in less than a decade is establish a wonderful cross-pollination of East meets West, without one design perspective overshadowing the other.

That cross-pollination was evident in Mohapatra’s resort 2020 collection. While renovating a 19th Century home in upstate New York, Mohapatra discovered some old 19th Century newspapers. This discovery served as the inspiration for Mohapatra’s resort 2020 collection.

The plaids and checkered fabric in this collection referenced the popular checkered fabric and plaids of the Gibson Girl of the late 19th Century. The padded shoulders also mirrored the stylish woman at the turn of the century. Bihbu Mohapatra modernized this inspiration by adding lots of asymmetrical cuts and embellishing the checkered fabrics and plaids with sequins.

Bibhu Mohapatra has set a standard for elegantly dressing celebrities for red-carpet appearances and the savvy, urban woman in embellished evening gowns for special events. That is not to say that he doesn’t include daywear in his collections—as he did in this resort 2020 collection. However, Mohapatra’s clothes are not for the shrinking wallflower or the conservative dresser. His garments are for that consumer who is not afraid to show off her glamour and panache, even during the daytime.  And this collection, perhaps, included more daywear than previous resort collections.

Still, Bibhu Mohapatra’s oeuvre is his eveningwear. And in that category, he is right up there with the some of the legends of the fashion industry. His resort 2020 resort collection was rather evidence of that particular genius.

Images courtesy of Bibhu Mohapatra

Standout looks in this resort 2020 collection included the black lace overlay cocktail dress with feathered bottom, white eyelet and lace calf-length dress, black and white off-the-shoulder cocktail dress with asymmetrical cut and black lace overlay, and black peplum evening gown with organza sleeves and organza overlay.

—William S. Gooch

Ozwald Boateng at the Apollo

The Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s was one of the most revolutionary and creative eras of black history. Harlem, New York became the pinnacle of black intellectual, artistic and social movements, forever changing black culture and putting the merits of black artists on display. Needless to say, even modern-day black contributions to creative industries owe themselves to the work of those who made the Harlem Renaissance happen from Langston Hughes to Countee Cullen to Zora Neale Hurston.

The influence of this movement is still remembered today on a global scale by black creatives around the world, including fashion designer Ozwald Boateng. Boateng is best known for being the first black designer to ever have his own shop on London’s Savile Row in addition to being a former creative director of menswear for Givenchy. For the 100th anniversary of the Harlem Renaissance, the designer decided to not only stage a show at Harlem’s legendary Apollo Theatre, but also launch womenswear as well, which took a see-now-buy-now approach.

In April when it was announced that the designer would be doing a show based on AI, everyone assumed that he meant Artificial Intelligence. As the runway show began, it was clear that this was not an homage to the future of fashion and technology, but, rather, an ode to black arts and culture past, present, and future. In this case, AI stood for “Authentic Identity.”

Boateng, who is of Ghanaian heritage, stayed true to his identity by infusing West African design influences, including tribal prints, in his clothes while blending them with Harlem Renaissance influences. Although womenswear is new for Boateng and a big divergence from traditional Savile Row tailoring, his knowledge of textiles, color, and silhouettes were front and center throughout the collection with his cohesive approach to color and the tailoring of the women’s pieces.

Notably, the majority of the models in Boateng’s show were people of color, an approach that has been bandied about in the fashion industry where diversity and inclusion has become hot topics. And true to form, Boateng’s models reflect the sassiness and sexiness of his designs.

Boateng’s show was truly groundbreaking, not only for him as a designer launching womenswear, but also as a moment in history for Black designers, many of whom go unsung or never reach these merits of notoriety. Remember, the Harlem Renaissance is not only noteworthy for great literature and black arts explosion, but also for the great fashion that the era produced.

Images courtesy of vogue.com

Boateng’s Apollo show was a renaissance of sorts for black models, black designers, and the black fashion intelligentsia, calling for a new age of black fashion in the fashion industry (Note Edward Enninful at British Vogue, Virgil Abloh at Louis Vuitton, and the rise of Pyer Moss, Laquan Smith, and Romeo Hunte, all garnishing an international audience.)The beauty of black culture received the celebration it deserved, and Boateng didn’t disappoint his audience with this once in a lifetime experience. Ozwald Boateng welcome back to New York City!!

—Kristopher Fraser

Naeem Khan Bridal Spring 2020

Naeem Khan has his finger, and a lot more, on the pulse of where modern bridal collections should be. Influenced by an article in The New York Times, as a part of their New York International Bridal Week spring 2020 season pre-coverage, that extolled the need for bridal designers to be more aware of the fact that the modern bridal customer is in the market for something that goes beyond fairytale, princess bridal gowns. Khan took notice of this and adjusted his spring 2020 bridal collection accordingly.

Still, Naeem Khan’s bridal collections have always been far more than conventional princess wedding gowns. Khan’s bridal collections have always played and frolicked on the side of sexiness and romantic abandon, and was never a concoction of whimsical, dreamy princess bride fare.

That said; for spring 2020 Khan did stray away from his penchant for overly embellished gowns, some of which could serve someone well at a discotheque or on a red carpet. There were more traditional bridal silhouettes in his current bridal collection with the embellishments appearing more on the veils than the bridal gowns themselves.

That said; thankfully not every look in this collection was traditional bridal fare. There were adequate amounts of bridal cocktail dresses, low exposing décolletage dresses, bridal gowns with statement sleeves, and one halter lace and sequined embellished jumpsuit that was to die for.

Photos courtesy of UK Maracaibo Photography

With this bridal collection, Naeem Khan did not score any points for innovation and originality. However, when it comes to versatility, Khan, perhaps, outdid his many bridal competitors with his range of looks and bridal silhouettes. Variety is the spice of life.—William S. Gooch

Serge Jevaguine Bridal Spring 2020

Serge Jevaguine has always been inspired by early couturiers and their design aesthetic. As a youth in his native Russia, Jevaguine continued his fascination with great art and famous couturiers of past like Christian Dior, Jeanne Lanvin, Cristobal Balenciaga, Madeleine Vionnet, and others by studying at the Academy of Arts of Moscow.

Not until he moved to Toronto, Canada did Jevaguine get the opportunity to create bridal wear. With his spring 2020 bridal collection, Jevaguine debuts this collection in New York City.

For the spring 2020 bridal collection, Serge Jevaguine was mesmerized by the simple and chic style of French actresses Brigitte Bardot, Michele Mercier, and Juliette Binoche. The collection seeks to capture the elegance of French Glamour featuring shimmering sequin gowns, luxe brocades paired with cascading, tulle overskirts and silk crepes with clean, style lines.

Each design is handcrafted from the best European fabrics and gives close attention to details like bejeweled belts, sheer hemlines and thigh high slits. Every gown is designed to emphasize the soft and feminine nature of each bride.

In this collection, Jevaguine emphasized the old adage, “less is more.”  The less is classic, yet not fussy, bridal silhouettes that have stood the test of time, combined with high quality fabrics. The more comes from the distinction that many of the bridal gowns in this collection are accompanied by attachments that can either accentuate the gown or be taken off.

Photos courtesy of Serge Jevaguine

Case in point, the brand’s Sophia SK bridal gown with the detachable train. Additionally, several of the gowns in the spring 2020 collection come in alternative colors and are appropriate for red garments or special events.What sets this bridal collection apart from other collections of its ilk is the luxury fabric choices and the appeal of the collection for an ever-evolving bridal consumer. Bravo on your New York debut!!

William S. Gooch

Watters Bridal Fall 2019

Watters is always known for pushing the envelope, and this season was no exception. The company debuted all three of their lines including their namesake Watters, Willowby, and Wtoo. Building on their own ahead of the curve DNA, the company had something to offer every type of bride.

Watters Photos courtesy of Coded PR

The namesake Watters line was all about love and lace, with classic romantic details including gorgeous veils with appliqués. During Bridal Week, there is, of course, so much emphasis put on the gowns, often details like the veil are ignored, but Watters didn’t miss a beat. And like many brands this season Watters also included plus-size models, with 67 percent of women in the US being a size 12 and beyond, it is important that they court that customer.Willowby, on the other hand, continues to play the role of the much younger sister to Watters in design aesthetic and demographic. For its spring 2020 collection, a portion of the gowns were a bit outside the traditional realm of bridal in some ways, with sheer embroidered overlays that projected as subtle sensuality and the absence of princess gowns.

Willowby fall 2019 photos courtesy of Coded PR

That said; the Willowby customer is a different kind of bride; one who dances to the beat of her own drum. It isn’t too often that you see an A-line wedding dress with a halter neckline and a key-hole cutout bodice.Wtoo was less cohesive than it was in past seasons, with looks going from traditional princess gowns to crop-top wedding dresses. Nevertheless, the collection still played to the fantasy aspect of the wedding day with whimsical floral details and tiered tulle dresses. Classic details, like lace embroidery, contrasted with the more contemporary details of deep V-necklines. The Wtoo girl isn’t afraid to be a little sexier than your classic bride, and she loves a good revealing neckline.

WToo fall 2019 photos courtesy of Coded PR

Watters, as a bridal brand, is gathering steam and more market dominance in its appeal to a variety of bridal customers. One of the most difficult challenges for a bridal brand is the creation of garments that can have market appeal to wide range of bridal customers. In spite of this challenge, Watters continues to successfully pull this exacting feat off. That in itself continues to be their greatest strength.—Kristopher Fraser

Justin Alexander Signature Bridal Spring 2020

Last season, Justin Alexander’s bridal collection centered around fashion-forward bridal glam. His bride was sophisticated, but willing to take risks. And though there were lots of classic bridal silhouettes in that collection, many of the garments in the collection could work as red-carpet garments or evening wear.

This season has turned out to be very different. Justin Alexander aimed for the more traditional bride for his spring 2020 collection which was inspired by the transformative nature of spring.

Justin Alexander reflected this point of view for spring 2020 in modern, clean styling with a romantic patchwork of florals that extended to a large floral motif. Continuing on his floral theme, Justin Alexander culminated this collection with embroidered florals expressed in appliques and large floral patterns.

And though Alexander aimed for a fresh, youthful appeal in this collection—sometimes he was successful—for the most part this collection would attract a more seasoned and mature bridal audience. And the addition of petal jackets, beaded cap sleeves, and the floral patchwork cape only helped place this collection in the vein of a more mature customer. Perhaps, even the customer getting married for the second time.

Photos courtesy of Atelier PR

Still, Justin Alexander should be given credit for injecting his own particular take on modern bridal wear. Thankfully, his design aesthetic is not staid, always projecting what is new and innovative.

Standouts in this collection include the strapless sequin flower lace gown with skirt detail, petal skirt silk Mikado cocktail dress, satin slim gown with beaded jacket, and floral patchwork V-neck jumpsuit.

—William S. Gooch

Amsale Bridal Spring 2020

Amsale Aberra left behind a legacy of elevating the bridal gowns beyond overly embellished princess gowns. Until Amsale Aberra established her eponymous brand, Amsale, bridal gowns, for the most part, reflected the aesthetic that one would expect when one witnessed a wealthy woman getting married in a big cathedral.

The designer, who passed away in April of 2018, was renowned for her stunning, approachable gowns that were suited for the modern woman. At New York Bridal Fashion Week, the designer’s legacy continued with a collection that was about how the modern bride envisions her very special day.

This season, the brand debuted Nouvelle Amsale, Little White Dress, Amsale, and Amsale x You. These four collections all spoke to different types of Amsale customers, from the younger bride to the more mature bride, and those who wanted something that was customizable. There is power and truth to the variations of the white dress walking down the aisle, something the brand has proven their design team easily recognizes.

Nouvelle Amsale explored femininity with bold necklines and floral details. This line was heavily focused on construction with architectural lines and illusion detailing. The crepe and satin materials were structured in a way fitting for younger brides who want that full-length gown effect, but don’t want a maximalist-type of gown with heavy embroidery and embellishments.

Little White Dress was a true exercise in minimalism. These dresses are for the brides who are not the ball gown types. Silhouettes included trapeze in faille and off-the-shoulder tulle midi-dresses. This collection was proof that not every bridal dress necessarily needs to make a bold statement, and that less can be more.

The mainline Amsale collection was an exploration of classic elegance. Voluminous gowns and lace details spoke to the traditional brides who dream of that perfect princess gown. The statement skirts were anchored by tailored bodices for a sensibly contrasting shape to the statement making garments.

Photos courtesy of Lividini PR

The runway show ended with a series of “real women” debuting the Amsale x You collection, their custom line. The women were a variety of different heights and body shapes, letting brides know that there is something at Amsale that can be designed to fit every woman. The brand’s strength continues to lie in their versatility, because after all, variety is the spice of life.—Kristopher Fraser

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