Ones to Watch: NYFW S/S ’16

FASHION WEEK ISN’T JUST ABOUT THE BIG-TICKET SHOWS AND DINNER PARTIES (THOUGH THEY’RE GREAT); IT GIVES NEW TALENT A PLATFORM TO SHINE. HERE ARE THE EMERGING LABELS YOU SHOULDN’T MISS, NO MATTER HOW PACKED YOUR SCHEDULE.

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HARBISON
When Charles Elliot Harbison landed an exclusive in Vogue’s September issue for the launch of his namesake collection, he must’ve been feeling pretty good. Add in landing retail accounts at Chicago’s Ikram and LA’s Satine, and Harbison’s debut was about as cherry-topped as they come. That isn’t to say the industry-wide praise was undeserved; in fact, just the opposite: North Carolina-raised Harbison is among the small subset of contemporary designers pushing luxury sportswear forward. He has the rare talent of balancing power with insouciance, whether that’s patchwork paneled overcoats, ruffle-waisted trousers or unorthodox pops of primary colors (obviously, the two-year-old label’s fans already include the likes of Lady Gaga and Beyoncé). Before introducing his namesake label, Harbison clocked in at Michael Kors, Luca Luca and Billy Reid, so to say he’s been “primed for success” only begins to broach his industry know-how. Let’s just say we won’t be surprised when his idiosyncratic collections continue to impress. S/S ’16 Presentation: Tuesday, September 15th; MADE at The Standard Highline, 442 West 13th Street; 3-5 pm.

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A MOI
A Moi may be relatively new to the scene, but women’s wear designer Alejandra Alonso is far from inexperienced— besides studying at nearly every prestigious fashion institute worldwide (think Iade, Central St. Martin’s, Parsons and Sorbonne, plus a Masters degree from The Art Institute of Chicago), she apprenticed for the likes of Anna Sui and Nicholas K. before breaking out on her own. The Madrid-raised designer says her European background coupled with her now-daily New York experiences influence her designs which isn’t hard to see— the label has a proclivity for neutrals (camels, blacks and greys) and classic silhouettes. Where A Moi really stands out is in the details: knits are expertly woven and trenches precisely cut, no doubt a byproduct of Alonso’s lengthy education. All made in New York City, the pieces recreate tradition with artisanal attention. S/S ’16 Presentation: Wednesday, September 9th; Industria Studios, 775 Washington Street; 9-11 am.

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SANDY LIANG
A Parsons degree, three collections (including a show at MADE Fashion Week) and a look book styled by Kate Foley would be a major coup for anyone, but at just twenty-three years old, Sandy Liang has heads turning with every move she makes. She’s unafraid to take risks when it comes to business and design, and it’s this sort of youthful disposition that defines her brand’s ethos. Rather than clothing that’s taken “too seriously,” Liang hopes hers inspires a playful approach to dressing. Like her shaggy shearling-trimmed moto jackets and blasé-fare cigarette pants inspired by old Supreme ads, Chloe Sevigny’s “je ne sais quoi” and Kate Moss (circa her Johnny Depp days) or her cotton-candy colored Mongolian fur jackets and crystal-embellished slip dresses that temper the brand’s rebellious edge with its equally expressed whimsicality. At once louche, luxe, tough and pretty, Liang is rewriting all of the rules. S/S ’16 Presentation: Saturday, September 12th; MADE at Milk Studios, 450 West 15th Street, Studio 1; 7-8 pm.

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TOME
For a fashion label designed by two men, Tome unequivocally knows its woman— she’s fierce, mature, discerningly put together, and yet, pragmatic; the kind of woman with a closet full of crisp white shirts, statement coats and dresses tailored to a “T.” Behind the five-year-old brand are Ramon Martin and Ryan Lobo, two Australian designers and longtime friends who met while studying at Fashion College in Sydney. After separately working in the industry for over a decade (Martin in design posts at Alberta Ferretti, Gaultier, J Mendel and Derek Lam; Lobo as a stylist and buyer), the duo launched Tome as a culmination of their years of inspiration and experience. It follows that Tome pieces bear a quiet intelligence, like kimono-style dresses with origami pleats or double-lined trench coats in tones of brown. In their quest for clothing that’s simultaneously wanted and needed, the guys bring something to the market that’s relatively rare: modernity grounded in purity. S/S ’16 Show: Thursday, September 10th; Skylight Clarkson Sq., 558 Washington Street; 4 pm.

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CG
If ever there were a fashion pedigree to be had, it’d be designer Chris Gelinas’: from Marc Jacobs and Proenza Schouler to Balenciaga and Theyskens’ Theory, he made himself privy to the tutelage of the industry’s elite. Now, with three collections of his own under his belt and another’s debut just a week away, Gelinas is finding his individual footing through women’s wear that moves. What we mean by that, of course, is his clothing plays with proportion, texture and shape— tops with structured bell sleeves, skirts with pleated hemlines and mixed media printed dresses. Never flat or stale, CG’s collections are instead drenched in personality. For S/S ’16, the designer is collaborating with jeweler Pia Wustenberg on an assortment of cuffs and eyewear label Oliver Goldsmith on sunglasses to fully bring his audacious CG woman to life. S/S ’16 Presentation: Friday, September 11th; The Park, 118 10th Avenue, Studio 1; 9-10 am.

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KAREN GALLO
We’ve yet to meet a croc-embossed bag or shoe we don’t like, but even so, Karen Gallo’s are something entirely special. Granted, what else is to be expected from a woman whose worn as many creative hats as stylist, creative director, interior designer and branding consultant before tossing accessories designer into the ring? The New Yorker-by-way-of-Colombia is clearly anything but short on ideas. Finding inspiration in everything from Wes Anderson’s The Royal Tenenbaums to Aaliyah, Gallo’s signature is sleek and understated with contemporary appeal— “the ultimate modern classics,” she says. Bags range from two-tone shoulder bags with gold hardware to calf-hair backpacks, while shoes include laser-cut pumps, seamed knee-high boots and sandal stilettos. Her eye for elevated staples and a clean palette gives her accessories real staying power. CP

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