NY Fashion week: A sea breeze downtown, race on the runway

Staff Writer
Columbus Monthly

NEW YORK (AP) — The Associated Press is all over New York Fashion Week, from the runways to celebrities as eight days of spring previews entered their second day Friday.



Acrylic clutch bags for the Instagram age took an oceangoing turn down in Soho, thanks to Edie Parker founder and designer Brett Heyman.

She put colorful, squiggly jellyfish, shells, hula-skirted ladies and anchors on her spring collection, mixing her signature playful acrylic with raffia, linen and wicker. And she didn't scrimp on the wordage, which some love to hate, offering "Chillax," ''Gay" and "Ahoy."

Heyman's bags are all over red carpets, with her kitschier versions also drawing celebrity attention.

"This is a funkier collection," she said. "I think someone with a fearless style would be good."

Like Gwyneth Paltrow?

"She has a bag of mine that says 'Baller.' I love that she bought that," Heyman laughed.

Edie Parker launched in 2010, driven by Heyman's love of vintage, mid-century style. Since, she has become a darling of the young and fearless, including Lupita Nyong'o, and she sells around the world in places like the Harvey Nichols store in Dubai and Neiman Marcus.

Last year she made it into the Top 10 for the Council of Fashion Designers of American/Vogue Fashion Fund Award.

"We have so much support from the red carpet, from celebrities," Heyman said as she showed off her latest beachy collection in happy hues of sea blue, sea foam and swirly, coral pink.

Heyman said she had the African/Brazillian goddess Yemaya on her mind. She may or may not have created the sea, and she's credited as a granter of wishes. At the dreary, drippy start of fashion week, a touch of ocean life might just have been one.

—Leanne Italie



Designer Kerby Jean-Raymond's collection for the Pyer Moss label launched Thursday night with gripping and now familiar videos of police violence. The choking death of Eric Garner. The teenage girl thrown to the ground outside a Texas pool party. The running down of a suspect as lights flashed. The smashing of a car window, and then cries.

He said his show was about defying stereotypes — "the thug, the entertainer" — and redefining the black narrative in America.

During the show's opening video, which combined the images of confrontation with a range of interviews with singer Usher and others on the need for change, people in the audience gasped or murmured. In an added touch, artist Gregory Siff moved among the models on the runway, quickly tagging the mostly stark, sport-ish clothes.

On the back of one robe, Siff scrawled "Breathe Breathe Breathe," a likely reference to Garner's repeated plea, "I can't breathe."

Even some models didn't know what they had signed up for until they heard the video begin backstage.

"I was so blown away by it, it was unreal," said British model Abby Clee. "I knew I was definitely moved. I was a bit teary but thought, 'No, I shouldn't cry when I'm about to go out.' I think a lot of people were quite moved, by their faces. Obviously, it means quite a lot to them."

Clee said she was honored to be in the show.

"I thought the message that they're sending was absolutely amazing," she said.

—Cara Anna


Associated Press writer Nicole Evatt contributed to this report.