Hanging in a nearly empty bedroom in a newly gentrified neighborhood in Brooklyn was a white sleek pass for the New York Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week 2012, a poster honoring the work of the late Alexander McQueen and the latest addition to the plethora of commemorative fashion related mementos – a sky blue press pass for entry to the New York Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week 2014 for the Alon Livne S/S 2015 show, dated Saturday September 6. The show in all of its glory is something of historic measures, for the most part because of the designer in question.
Alon Livne has achieved much in very little time. For some, he may be considered an up and coming designer. Others saw his potential long before Harper’s Bazaar featured him and the dress he designed on the back of the fashion’s newest style icon, Kendall Jenner. His work has graced the bodies of Beyonce, Paris Hilton, Jennifer Lopez, Kendall Jenner and Lady Gaga amongst other influential celebrities with futuristic bodices and eye-catching color patterns. The man himself is of Israeli descent and the country’s most promising designer, sticking to his roots by doing his work in Tel-Aviv and keeping the world posted via Instagram and other social media platforms for his future endeavors and designs. Considering the sleepless nights that go into producing a show of that magnitude, it was a pleasant surprise seeing a number of genuine smiles.
If you have never been to a show such as this that falls into the enormous lineup that Fashion Week offers, I must warn you for as a note for the future, they all fall under the same category – beautifully chaotic.
Sign in to enter the show was housed in the sweltering hot lobby of The Hub at the Hudson Hotel, a shadow away from young ladies in all black with blaring headsets at the Lincoln Center. Alon Livne was among the group of designers who opted out of the esteemed venue this year. Rather than show-hopping individuals, the crowd members were truly interested in his work and made a point in being there to show appreciation. The venue gave the show an air of intimacy that could not have been achieved in the always changing Lincoln Center.
Armed backstage were organized, but nonetheless intimidating hair, and makeup teams. Stick thin and impossibly tall, but healthy, models in sky-high heels commanded the room as they stood as instructed on the pristine white catwalk surrounded by press and pure black wall as they waited for the next command for show rehearsal. The makeup and hair team slicked back all of the model’s hair into tight buns, but the exhaustion and seriousness couldn’t be covered up with concealer. Considering these were the same models that on average spent the span of Fashion Week doing two or more shows a day, partying at night and waking up early to do it all over again, the look was understandable.
The stage was set in the sub-basement of the hotel, which proved somewhat of an inconvenience as the hotel guests constantly occupied the elevators and the fact that it took about three flights of stairs to reach the show.
The post-modern architecture of Michael Havemeyer was said to have inspired the collection that swept the room. Livne in true form had a large number of pieces with signature cutouts of every possible kind. Leather, neoprene and chiffon dominated the pieces alongside staple colors of grey, black, silver and lavender. The models stood in the same spot for thirty minutes before moving out then having to do the same walk to the same spot all over again for another thirty minutes. Most were able to keep composure even as the most intrusive of fashionistas got uncomfortably close to whatever body part they were trying to photograph. Considering there weren’t any seats set up or a barrier between the crowd and the models, this unfortunately happened quite often.
If the setup itself did not convince the crowd of the legitimacy of the mood that Alon Livne was trying to achieve, the sounds of the live band in the corner covered the rest. The band “Ariana & the Rose” brought the last element necessary for the sensory overload that was the show itself. With pulse vibrating volume, futuristic sound and Ariana herself with an Alon Livne dress on, the energy of the room was inescapable.
The show was an hour long glimpse into the future. When I first discovered Alon Livne I saw his designs as in line with the clothes in Tron Legacy in the sense that the designs were beautiful and not of our time. The music at the show was not by Daft Punk, but the same futuristic vibe was only arm’s length of each other.
If the world didn’t know of Alon Livne before, they should now because the future waits for no one. In the constantly changing world of fashion, knowing what is “in” now means you’re already late and knowing the future is the only way to stay relevant.