Feb 11, 2016 7:12 PM
NY Fashion Week: Kanye West wows crowd, BCBG goes Bowie
The Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) The Associated Press is all over New York Fashion Week, from the runway designs to the celebrity-filled front rows. Here are some highlights from Thursday's opening day:
KANYE WEST DROPS ALBUM AND NEW YEEZY LINE
The rapper and designer pleased a crowd of about 20,000 at Madison Square Garden and thousands more at movie theaters around the globe when he debuted his new album, "The Life of Pablo," and unveiled the third season of his Yeezy shoe and clothing line.
It was an emotional moment for West and his family as his brother-in-law, Lamar Odom, strode to a seat, the first time he'd attended a public event since he was hospitalized in critical condition in Las Vegas in October 2015 after he was found unconscious at a Nevada brothel with cocaine in his system.
As West walked Odom to his seat with the Kardashian and Jenner families, the crowd cheered and shouted Odom's name.
West took to a bank of sound boards to present the album as his models stood still on a tall platform, surrounded by others just below wearing athletic-inspired looks, patterned sweaters and other designs that appeared more refined than his previous season.
North, West's 2-year-old daughter with Kim Kardashian, danced along to the music.
In a show lasting more than an hour, West thanked everyone from his late mother to Anna Wintour as he cranked the volume up to the delight of the crowd. Wintour was there along with others in fashion, music and entertainment, including Jennifer Hudson, Karlie Kloss, Gigi Hadid, Rosie O'Donnell, Melanie Griffith and 50 Cent.
DAVID BOWIE INSPIRES BCBG, IN STYLE AND SPIRIT
The inimitable strains of David Bowie's "Fame" and "Let's Dance" filled the cavernous runway space at the BCBG Max Azria show, a tribute to the late rock star's passion for the art of performance.
"We have an inspiration board in our design offices and we had so many pictures of David Bowie and this was before he passed away," said Lubov Azria, one half of the designing duo, in a backstage interview. "I think we loved the idea of performance and performer. We are all performing in some way or the other, and a performer ... gives us hope. They inspire us to be better."
Azria said this idea was reflected in designs like Lurex tops woven with yarn with a shiny, metallic appearance as well as lots of slashed leggings. "There's a performer inside of each model," she noted. Also prominent on the runway were oversized sleeves and lots of ruffles, albeit in soft, cozy sweaters. A typical design was a soft, off-the-shoulder sweater dress in peacock blue, paired with a cropped trouser and slashed Lurex leggings underneath. On the feet were black leather booties with shearling details.
Azria said she and her husband, Max, were "huge, huge fans" of Bowie. "I mean, who isn't?" she asked. And she allowed that though "Heroes" was her favorite Bowie song, "'Let's Dance' was not bad either."
Bowie, who died in January of cancer at age 69, wasn't the only inspiration for Thursday's show: The designers were also seeking to channel an '80s vibe, epitomized in those wider sleeves, wider bottoms, and "big, structured jackets." And they also wanted to provide "something tactile and real," said Azria in a way, a throwback to basics at a time when technology is revolutionizing fashion. "I think in some way, when technology goes forward, fashion can go back," she said.