FW18; Major Moment | Carolina Herrera
For the past 28 years, Carolina Herrera has crafted timelessly clean and classically feminine looks.
However, news broke on the second day of NYFW that she would be stepping down from her position and handing the designer reigns to Wes Gordon, who has been her creative consultant for the past 11 months.
Herrera’s announcement is important to note for quite a few reasons.
For one, she is one of the last remaining “establishment” designers to bow out, leaving only Ralph Lauren as the head designer of his own label.
But maybe more importantly than that, is that her resignation reflects the current shift from the established rules if you will, that the industry is facing.
It is becoming increasingly harder for designers to keep up with an industry that demands constant content and innovation.
As noted, new designers are opting out of the traditional fashion week norm; after all, they have the option of doing things how they want. Similarly, mid-career designers are playing with their current formulae to find out what works for them.
And for Herrera – who has definitely made her mark in the fashion world – stepping aside to allow fresh creative eyes may be a very business savvy move.
“Just don’t say I am retiring,” Herrera told the Times. “I am not retiring! I am moving forward.”
Naturally, the show was dedicated to Herrera herself; an homage to a woman with such exceptional personal style.
There were wildcat prints, charming florals, and those stripes that she loves so much. There was beading, fringe, and of course some feathers, that were all simply and chicly executed.
But probably the most obvious Herrera reference came at the end.
20-odd models wearing crisp, white, button-down shirts and boldly-colored, ball-gown skirts paraded down the runway in a silhouette that has become synonymous with the designer. A quite fitting finale indeed.
However, probably the most touching was the atelier, hands that have crafted Herrera’s creations over the years, who watched from the mezzanine and then joined their director for her final bow.
In a sea of edgy, urban street-style, it will be interesting to see how Gordon charts the brand’s course.
I mean, just how relevant is soft and pretty in today’s society?
Don’t get me wrong. Every woman loves to look flowery and feminine – and it is necessary – but in these times, women, whether they know it or not, need to be a little less rosy, and a little more thorny.
But…we’ll see how it goes…
See the rest of the collection here.