For the third season in a row, NYC-based digital media platform, VFILES, is preparing to stage its MADE FASHION show. VFILES, which sources its talent via a global user-generated contest, is slated to select three winners again this season, who will show their collections at one of the most talked about runway shows during New York Fashion Week this upcoming September. In addition to the extensive amount of media exposure that the VFILES show attracts and the added perk of being stocked at both VFILES's e-shop and in its brick and mortar store, this past season's winners, Melitta Baumesiter (one of her looks is pictured below) and Hyein Seo, have become go-to brands for CFDA Style Icon Award winner, Rihanna. Designers, there is still time to submit your lookbooks, and for everyone else, we have scoured the many submissions and selected a few of our initial favorites ...
“Luxury with a pinch of crass” should be the tagline of Crude’s Spring/Summer 2015 collection, and for good reason. First and foremost, “crass” is used in the best way possible, to contribute a sense of nonchalance to this satin rich and overtly-luxurious collection. Featuring pieces like an opulent violet fur coat (in a shade that probably belongs in the ultraviolet family) and a black leather dress with a pristine white collar that would give Wednesday Addams a run for her money, this collection does not fall short of breathtaking...at all. This enchanting collection is the proper mix of soft, graphic prints, structure and slouch, and it all comes together to form a bizarre and beautiful take on androgyny. White suits with deep hemlines, fur stoles, space age style clutches and mohair shorts are all created in beautiful jewel tones. Think of this collection as an avant-garde take on the love child of Sweeney Todd, Star Wars and Sleeping Beauty; dark luxury that’s definitely out of this world.
Strong, clean lines with graphics that are reminiscent of a scarab beetle and a modern take on metaphysical baroque prints come together to form the ultra-urban aesthetic of Tothem’s Spring/Summer 2015 collection. Think the new-age wave has left us? Think again. Each of Tothem’s looks feature some sort of occult style vibe; whether it’s a geometric, honeycomb print on a structured sweatshirt or a splatter painted men’s set more reminiscent of a distant galaxy, there seems to be something mystical about each of these pieces. The menswear in this collection is astounding as well, and could easily constitute a collection all its own. Noteworthy pieces include an ombre blue suit with a meticulously boxy coat and a tribal print number in an alluring lapis and teal. This collection is littered with sacred geometry, and the kind of high fashion, spiritual vibe that will translate perfectly on whatever coast you’re on.
Sharp tailoring and oversized prints come together to form a new age, masculine aesthetic for Edmund Ooi’s Autumn Winter 2014/15 collection. Pleated dress pants and boxey coats in bright reds, teals and stark whites and blacks are complimented by short shorts, leather accents and the perfect patent gray combat boot. Graphic prints are incorporated in statement pieces too, helping to create a visual feast for the eyes. A black and white mohair coat with “X” printed all over is reminiscent of a couture Cruella De Ville coat, while a woven houndstooth coat in black and red is more suited for the edgier male clientele since it dons accents like subtle color blocking and a chunky hood. This collection strays from the quintessential idea of menswear by including shorts that critics may deem “too short” and by including the glorious male skort as well. Ooi’s collection is suited for the urban male who appreciates a tailored red suit with the perfect front pleat. It is the perfect A/W collection for a man who understands the power of proportion, leather skirts and a good set of knees.
Alien princess and death queens alike can find a home for themselves in the likes of Valery Kovalska’s darkly twisted pieces. Each of Kovalska’s pieces feature a particular detail that is unusual and original; whether it’s a new take on the peplum or a cutout exactly where you wouldn’t expect it, this collection takes the “witch” look and enchants it. Net overlays on dresses that feature woven leather jackets and asymmetrical hemlines, and pristine white dresses look especially like modern art when they feature geometric mesh inserts. This collection is nothing short of jaw dropping and spell raising the whole way through, from the subtle textures worn on leather to the tailored takes on an asymmetrical suit. Also worth mentioning is the fact that Kovalska manages to utilize sports-style numbers (a trend we are dying to see … die) in a fresh and lovely way, something we just didn't think was possible at this point!
Sculpted outerwear in stone grays and soft pinks are more reminiscent of sculptures than they are of coats, all thanks to RHODONITE’s delicate tailoring on thick and sturdy fabrics. RHODONITE has created pieces that may as well be boulders; solid looks that will last from season to season, acting as a sort of stepping stone for the portion of your closet dedicated to investment pieces. Furry gray crewnecks styled over slick pencil skirts, cape-like coats cinched at the waist for the ultimate hourglass effect and a blazer in a slippery, molten metallic all find their footing in colors and textures that are both grounded and ethereal. Feminine pieces with a pinch of garden party luxe come together in texture rich fabrics to create a new take on the term stony.
Is minimalism a mindset, or is it simply an aesthetic? It seems like Hanger Inc has unintentionally posed this question. Buttery leather coats and tops in grays and blacks are paired with knee kissing skirts and ankle grazing pants in straight, loose silhouettes. Leather pieces inform most of this collection and are featured by way of tops, coats and skirts without discrimination. Minimalism seems to be a sort of theme in this collection, but not necessarily in a classic way. Bustiers, cropped long sleeve tops and burgundy dress pants don’t constitute minimalism usually, but this edgy and urban take on it seems appropriate. Although this clean and cool look isn’t totally new on the runway, we can’t deny that the effortless nature of Hanger Inc’s collection does feel fresh for Fall.
Think streamlined minimalism that’s rough around the edges; a sweatshirt with faux sleeves covered in rivets and a wool sweatshirt in dove gray paired with the perfect white midi. The key is in the details when you’re creating something that’s already been done. Soft gauzy dresses with paneling that resemble the most pristine cuts of wood and stone, and faux sleeves on unseen silhouettes suddenly make the old look new. Mature minimalism in drastic neutrals is contrasted to the nines when juxtaposed with graphic prints that feature flying saucers. Gola Damian’s Fall/Winter 2014/15 collection sings volumes about the young, cool and collected sort of ease that will hopefully be embraced in the cooler months to come, and with some edits to the styling of the collection, it would be even more of a knock-out.
GABRIELA LORRAINE is a fashion blogger and writer. She is a fashion merchandising and print journalism student at the University of South Carolina. For more from Gabriela, follow her on Twitter.