February 11th marks the kick-off of fall fashion week, but with almost 100 shows no one has the time (or energy) to see them all. NBC put together a list of the designers you’ve gotta watch, so fine tune your runway radar to these 10 talents prepared to set NYC ablaze in a stylized fire.
Sophie Theallet: We first brought you news of Sophie Theallet when she outfitted the first lady and won the the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund back in November. A french-born, Brooklyn-residing designer, Theallet’s worldly view embraces a multicultural spirit with a wild color palette, pattern-slathered retail collections, and diverse Euro-American-African influences.
Jeremy Scott: This L.A. designer is a stand-out thanks to his electric collections (he’s sent models down the runway covered in dirt with garbage can lids for hats in Paris) and his stunner fans, which include Lady Gaga and Katy Perry.
Jason Wu: (dress pictured above) After winning the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund one year ago and designing Michelle Obama’s inauguration gown (sound familiar? Check out Sophie Theallet again), Jason Wu has blown up. Sassy, sophisticated and lady-like, Wu has wooed celebs like Diane Kruger, Eva Longoria, and Jessica Alba. After an early and efficient establishment in the fashion world, what Wu brings next will be critical in developing a future for his design house.
Vena Cava: Designers Sophie Buhai and Lisa Mayock found success with Vena Cava’s bold prints, luxe colors, and retro vibe, but this season they’ll begin to push themselves into a newer, swankier direction. We will have to wait and see if the design team creates an edgy-working collection, or an overly abrasive parade.
Gary Graham: Graham (work pictured above) is a favorite among the downtown elite who drop major dough to look like a subject in one of Millet’s field paintings. His romantic, flirty-grunge feel leaves his fans looking like a Cinderella in Seattle, and his work with leather accessories is to-die-for.
Altuzarra: Joseph Altuzarra’s self-named line is a river of statement dresses raging down a runway. The Givenchy veteran has adapted some of the fashion house’s signature styles, but added a hipster edge that makes gives his collection’s voice a rocker rasp rather than a French lisp.
Prabal Gurung: He shocked runway-watchers last fall when he debuted his collection of architectural and womanly dresses. Gurung is notable for the attention to detail: Think attention-grabbing shoulder accessories or the oversized bows that take his dresses from “seen it before” to something new.
Rachel Comey: This Brooklyn designer is as bound to the city as Central Park or the Empire State Building. The hipster-chic of her home borough lives in her garments, as does the attitude of the rest of the big apple, where she rides her bike for inspiration.
Alexander Wang: Who doesn’t love a designer with the chutzpah of Alexander Wang? Never subdued and always flawless, Wang’s collections are commercially appealing without sacrificing art. He has become a retail maven, while maintaining his super-chic celebrity fan base.
Yigal Azrouel: The designer’s collections (pictured above) are almost as pretty to look at as he is. Models look strong and sexy in silhouette and fabrics that are body-skimming and oh-so sensual.