We are living in an incredible time for fashion. A renaissance, if you will. Right now, you could probably get famous on TikTok for an exceptional fifteen seconds of content and within months be handpicked by the Virgil Abloh himself to sit at a Louis Vuitton show.
But that’s merely the discourse surrounding the fashion world. When it comes to the clothes themselves, fashion is smarter, more accessible and more inclusive than ever. Just a few weeks ago, Rihanna had massive success with the show for her Savage X Fenty lingerie line, which featured dazzling choreography and sexy new silhouettes made for every type of woman.
However, there is no better example of clothing made for the diverse humans of 2019 than what was displayed at L.A. Fashion Week.
You might be scratching your head right now, oblivious to its existence, but LAFW is extremely hot. Despite not having the prestige of the big four (New York, London, Milan and Paris), Los Angeles is one of the largest cultural centers for fashion in the world. Many designers and modeling agencies are based in L.A., and as influencers from all backgrounds flock to the City of Angels, designers are taking notes.
Originally called “Press Week,” LAFW has been around since 1953, but the term L.A. Fashion Week wasn’t used until 2002. Held biannually, LAFW just wrapped up its Fall 2020 run at the Peterson Automotive Museum.
The first designer to hit the runway was Noe Bernacelli, a Peruvian creative director whose collection, “El Cuervo y la Serpiente,” showcased formalwear with intricate beading and needlework. I could probably stare at his dresses for hours. Coral Castillo’s line of black, white and navy blue gowns featuring bodices adorned with geometric patterns was also to die for.
However, what stood out to me the most at LAFW was the exploration of traditional feminine silhouettes in a modern context. Luooifstudio’s 2020 collection gave audiences a taste of both couture and ready to wear, showing that the Instagram aesthetics of matching sets and sock heels can be high fashion if done in an interesting way. The mint, chartreuse and lilac color scheme was understated, yet effective in complementing the bolder design elements. My eyes were also drawn to Tako Mekvabidze’s take on what it means to be a “cool girl.” Mekvabidze, a Georgian designer, brings the edginess of her hometown to LA through leather trench coats and tiny sunglasses.
Additionally, the low-keyness of LAFW allowed for more diversity in the models. Although it’s disappointing that the big four is incredibly slow to adopt these practices, I’m a big believer that diversity on the runway should be normalized everywhere and that the media should make more of an effort to cover the shows that do. Smock Me’s colorful urban collection showcased just that, proving their clothes are for everyone, regardless of height, race or size. The collection seemed to be a fan favorite; it received the most positive comments out of all the posts on LAFW’s Instagram.
LAFW isn’t the most cutting-edge event happening in the fashion world right now, but it’s still incredibly important. Designers from all over the world have come to showcase their work, proving that Los Angeles is still a pioneer of style. LAFW is adapting to changing tastes influenced by the digital age, perhaps faster than most of its contemporaries, just by being at the center of it.
Overall, LAFW is definitely hot. If you haven’t seen the looks, check them out on Instagram @LAFW.
Rachel Billington is a sophomore majoring in creative writing. Her column, “That’s Hot,” runs every other Wednesday.