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Working the Catwalk

“Working the Catwalk: Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week”
by Gustavus Betts

The 2014 Fall/Winter Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week presentation kicks off one week after the Superbowl, featuring some of the top and up and coming fashion designers and fashion houses from the U.S., Europe, Asia, and Australia. The semi annual celebration of all things in fashion descended on Manhattan Thursday, February 6th, and runs through February 13, 2014,  according to fashion imsider Stephanie Carpenter. Events are being held at New York’s Lincoln Center, with more than 300 runway presentations that hosts such designers as:  Tadishi Sohji, Lubov and Max Azria of

BCBG MaxAzria, Nicole Miller, and Jason Wu. Perhaps the most anticipated designer this season is Marc Jacobs who will debut his first solo collection since leaving Louis Vuitton. Those in attendance can expect to see an abundance of Americana inspired styles, a lot of men’s fashion, and oversized lady apparel.

Celebrities such as  Carrie Underwood, Alyssa Milano, Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn, NeNe Leakes, Kelly Rowland, Paris Hilton and Zosia Mamet from the HBO television series “Girls” have already been spotted in front row seats.

MBFW’s Thursday opening  featured the Japanese-American designer Tadishi Sohji whose Moonlight Moorish Palace runway presentation featured models with laser-cut micro suede sleeveless dresses, messy hair buns, exquisitely embroidered textured tulle capes, and shear laced gowns. Other pieces of soft pale nudes, shimmering stones,  and velvet appeared whimscial yet relevant, states fashion blogger Shania Moskowitz who adds, “Sohji’s collection is essential pieces of aniquity and modernity.” Lubov and Max Azria debuted their Fall/Winter 2014 collection also on Thursday.

The Ukrainian husband and wife designing duo paid tribute to winter’s essentials with their signature brand’s effortless accessible luxury by mixing knee high boots paired with winter hues and lighter brighter colors (mauve, blush, and mint) in small doses, as well as silky pants with knee length tunics, flowing dresses and structured skirts combined with boxy jackets for an overall winter fashion appeal Jyati Rathi with New York Style Examiner observed. However, fur was the focal point in the collection. Big fur hand warmers (muffs), ginger hued coats trimmed in raccoon fur, fox fur scarves, and fur motorcycle jackets were enough to surely upset many PETA activists. Undeterred, Max Azria said in a backstage interview opening night, “It’s a collection that any woman can wear. A Bohemian style, but chic and classy.”

On Friday February 7th Nicole Miller appeared to embrace this theme as well. Miller’s runway presentation, according to Alison Baitz, was inspired by strong, iconic warrior women. The look intricately pieced together garments made of slick black leather that emote an overall feeling of armor, yet still looked street appropriate.”The collection used the interplay of cool and warm tones to great effect with leather, peacock feathers, and fur playing a dominant role,” Baitz  adds. Accessorized with black tights, layered black jewerly and earrings (although strong and fierce) gave Miller’s collection and overall feeling of power.

Also on Friday, Jason Wu revealed his collection to a stylish crowd in Soho.  His runway presentation, inspired by “austere elegance,” featured high end  models like Adriane Lima, Marlowe Kloss, Jourdan Dunnie and Hanne Guby, according to fashion commentator Sharon Feireisen. His very structured collection included wide leg pants, slip dresses, fitted sweaters, fur trimmed outerwear and silky fabrics that were quite engaging. The designer incorporated sexy cowl neck  dresses, as well as cut-out evening dresses ( some sporting thigh-high slits that were sexy, but not too revealing) that gave the collection a bit of an edge, according to Feireisen. Wu designs leans towards powerful, confident women.

Saturday,February 8th and Sunday 9th, catwalk presentations featured and ever growing list of designers and fashion houses such as: David Tlale (Sat. 12pm @ Pavillon), CZAR by Cesar Galindo (Sat. 1:30pm @ Hub), Diane Von Furstenbery (Sat. 5pm @ 50 Varick), Donna Karan New York (Sun. 12pm @ 23 Wall Street), and Milly by Michelle Smith (Sun. 2pm @ Salon).  Other highly anticipated upcoming runway presentations are: Tory Birch (Monday, Feb. 10 @ Avery Fisher Hall), Betsey Johnson (Tuesday, Feb. 11 @ Salon), KaufmanFranco, (Wednesday, Feb. 12 @ Theatre),and Hernan Lander (Thursday, Feb. 13 @ Pavillion).

. For a complete list of designers/fashion houses presentations, visit mbfw.com.

Image by: Getty Images 

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