Tweet me, poke me, Insta-this, tumble that. The barrage of social media in our everyday lives was destined to walk the runway one day, wasn’t it? Kenneth Cole, who hasn’t showed during New York Fashion Week in seven years, made a triumphant return to the catwalk with a collection inspired by the world of social media. No, the models weren’t wearing Tweets or smart phone-enabled jewelry. Kenneth Cole Collection, the designer’s higher-end ready-to-wear label was, instead, was inspired by the men and women who walk the city of New York — or anywhere, really — with their phone always at the ready to blast out a Tweet or Status Update. In short, it was a cheeky yet chic look at how social media and Fashion Week have become not-so-strange bedfellows.
Even during his hiatus from the runway, Cole has been known for clothes with an urban edge, not quite prep, not quite minimal, but completely modern and, above all, wearable. The show was also streamed online, which many designers (Rachel Roy, Ralph Lauren, DvF, etc.) have also embraced. In true multiplatform synergy, Cole even used the show to benefit amFar, with every Tweet earning the charity $1 for every #KCRUNWAY tag. Cole happens to be amFar’s chairman of the board, so we assume it didn’t take much finagling to tie the show in with the charity. But for all the buzz surrounding the show, the clothes themselves were why editors and fashion fans tuned in online and braved the mighty Nemo, and they were a true testament to Cole’s M.O.
The menswear and womenswear that Cole and creative director Kobi Halperin sent down the runway were deep and dark — a New York staple — but integrated techy fabrics such as bonded leathers, woven wool hybrids and holographic-finished outerwear (a favorite this season, just check out Minkoff, Milly and more). You could practically see style bloggers fighting over open-toed over-the-knee boots and big, chubby coats. Colors such as oxblood and deep fatigue green kept the palette decidedly dark, which will balance any street style poser’s usually saccharine Bloglovin’ page. But add-ons such as multi-use pockets and photo-friendly chokers and harnesses will be a staple for seasons to come. At the end of the show, models had their own phones in hand as they took their final passes, Instagramming the audience and sending out Tweets of their own. If that wasn’t meta enough, front row regulars, editors and the like went back to their iPads, laptops and more just to find that they’d been Tumbled, tagged and Tweeted themselves.
Photos courtesy Kenneth Cole and Style.com