Hakan Akkaya Fall 2020

Every season, fashion industry professional anxiously anticipate the next great fashion designer/brand. In fact, many can recall when the first encountered Alexander Wang or became familiar with Marc Jacobs’ design aesthetic. Many industry professionals boast that in spite of Christian Siriano’s turn on “Project Runway,” they knew that he had all the goods. Or some contend they were the first in the States to discover the gender fluid phenomena Palomo Spain.

Unfortunately, New York Fashion Week: The Shows (NYFWS) doesn’t give industry professional many opportunities these days to witness extraordinary talent. However, when a new talent comes on the NYFWS scene, everyone stands up and takes notice.

Though not exactly new on the scene—this is Hakan Akkaya’s third season showing at NYFWS—everyone is taking notice of Turkish designer, Hakan Akkaya. To an overpacked house at Pier 59, Hakan Akkaya demonstrated that he is becoming a fashion force to be reckoned with and that he possesses the skill set and design aesthetic necessary to create a huge fashion career.

Hakan Akkaya’s fall 2020 “Justice” collection was heavy on gender fluidity, punk subculture, and hardware. Interestingly, all of these points of view have been seen before and in lots of incarnations; still, like all brilliant designers, Akkaya understands that the genius of a collection is not necessarily in the innovation but in how all the parts come together. Additionally, combining gender neutrality—particularly when it comes to menswear—with a hardcore punk aesthetic with sadomasochistic overtones is not an easy thing to do. However, Akkaya pulled it off with stylish charm and imagination.

This fall 2020 collection had almost everything that a brand could wish for. It was sexy when it needed to be while not descended into the va va voom category. It was fashion forward while staying accessible. It has charm, wit and humor without being kitschy. And lastly, it was powerful with great force without being oppressive and overbearing.

If there was drawback to this collection, it would be Hakan Akkaya’s penchant for making everything is neutral colors. A splash of bold color would have elevated this fall 2020 collection out of the realm of urban warrior gear, ready to battle the urban terrain with all its dangerous adventures.  There are stylish souls who don’t reside in urban jungles. And those stylish creatures might feel a little intimidated by this collection. Then again, powerful fashion statements are not for the mild mannered.

Interestingly, this could be the ideal collection for that stylish warrior that’s ready to revolt against a repressive political regime, gearing up for the revolution. A revolution against oppressive ideals, making your statement about gender equality, freedom of expression, and sexual diversity.

Images courtesy of The Bromley Group

There were many great standouts in this “Amish meets Punk” collection. The most noteworthy were the many man skirts, Akkaya’s white Amish blouse with black pencil skirt with side ruffled embellishments, black long-sleeved fit-and-flare gown with bobby pin embellishments, Amish black slacks with patent-leather lapel vest, white Amish blouse with patent-leather skirt and embellished bustier, and black patent-leather top with matching shorts underneath diaphanous black gown.

—William S. Gooch


  1. Excellent review! You spotted it all and all the subtitles!
    Thx for writing visually!

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