6 Unexpected Show-Stealing Moments From NYFW

This NYFW felt particularly unhinged, and mostly in a good way. There was spoken-word Courtney Love at Batsheva, Rico Nasty lighting a joint at Gypsy Sport, BARRY FREAKIN’ MANILOW closing out Michael Kors with “Copacabana”. Life’s wild, and so, this season, was NYFW.


Cathy Horyn lamented a lack of direction from Fashion Week, writing for The Cut: “The rapid changes, and the crumbling of a structure that’s basically been in place for well over a century, account, I think, for a lack of conviction that’s evident at the New York shows.” And there was a sense of designers throwing things at the wall to see what sticks. But in that dissolution of what fashion week has meant, there is perhaps some freedom to get a little weird, which is exactly what happened in these very unexpected—and very joyful—NYFW moments:

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“She Was a Showgirl…”—Are you, too, sitting in your apartment or office feeling like you may never enjoy the warm sunlight of a summer’s day on your face again? Boy, do Barry Manilow and Michael Kors (two names we didn’t think we’d type together!) have a fix for you. At the very disco and, yes, very Studio 54-themed show, the glam dad of radio-rock tore up a gold-tinsel covered stage as Bella Hadid and Patti Hansen danced alongside him.


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Spoken-Word Courtney Love Poetry at Batsheva—Make no mistake, Batsheva’s prairie dresses are not your sweethearts. They sing couplets from Hole’s “Doll Parts”, they have lipstick scrawled like blood on them, they have Christina Ricci, who’s played Wednesday Addams and Lizzie Borden, modeling them. Batsheva Hay, in a tribute to Love and a departure from her Little House on the Prairie ascension, let the audience—and the rest of us—at her show know that prairie dresses can be a pretty good symbol of female rage.


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Bagels and Lox at Susan Alexandra—The it’s-always-summer colorful beaded world of Susan Alexandra made its NYFW debut at Baz Bagel & Restaurant on the Lower East Side. The models, including comedians Cat Cohen and Lauren Servideo, dressed as diner waitresses while modeling the bags in their many prints, from leopard to a classic tourist-shop “I <3 NY” design.


The Most Unexpected Show-Stealing NYFW Moments

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Lil Kim and Paris Hilton at The Blonds—A show from The Blonds feels like a high-octane, mega pop star performance at Madison Square Garden—everything is theatrical, sexy, and fully amped. Whether the theme is Disney villains or Vegas glam, there will be dripping gold chains, white latex thigh-high boots, leopard-print bodysuits, and, this time, Lil Kim. Closing the show in a gold fringe jumpsuit performing “Go Awff,” the whole show gave us, as they say, life.


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Rico Nasty Lighting a Joint at Gypsy Sport—Obviously weed, now legal in many states and probably currently being smoked by your mom who’s going to a boutique smoke shop, is not taboo, but there’s still a high-school delight in seeing someone light up a joint in an unexpected place. Weed and NYFW don’t typically go together, until rapper Rico Nasty lit up a joint in a bedazzled bra and spiked hoop earrings at Gypsy Sport. And that was the tamest part of the collection!


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Tom Ford’s Pimp Hat—Taking the Jay-Z lyric “ladies is pimps too, go on brush your shoulders off” to heart, Tom Ford sent models down the runway with some faux mink pimp hats in luscious pastels that completely stole the show. Tilted just so slightly to give off some street-corner swagger, it was extra cool to see them on the runway while the surreal, languid beauty of Crowded House’s “Don’t Dream It’s Over” played.


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