Friday, June 20, 2014

Runway to Reality: Getting the Looks from AFW

Alternative Fashion Week gives designers a chance to express themselves with complete freedom and that's an opportunity that wasn't missed during this year's Grand Finale Runway Show. From hand-felted dresses to those made entirely out of hair, the runway event was a truly spectacular expression through clothing. 

Below are some looks I've put together inspired by some of the noticeable trends from the show and what I took away from the collections...

First things first, when it comes to "alternative" fashion, edgy looks are always on trend. From the dominatrix-style pieces seen at House of Baboski and Isolda Couture to the glam rock styles at Shannon Kelleher Designs and Ryain, tough, sleek, and sexy was a popular combination.

To get the look, think strappy and black, like the dress and heels shown below. 
Edgy metallic accessories, like the handcuff clutch, and bold makeup, like the oxblood lipstick, lend a touch of glam to a tough ensemble. 

Another trend emerged through the use of lace, florals, and ladylike silhouettes at Elizabeth Ashleigh Designs, Carrol + Cleopatra, Anti.Label, and Phlipped Fashions. With nods to 30s and 40s silhouettes, these designers showed how to make vintage look current.

This style is all about an edgier take on femininity. Hourglass silhouettes, like this peplum top and high-waisted shorts, mixed with precious prints, like polka dots, florals, and hearts, lend a classic feminine air. While unexpected twists, like the use of leather, keep the look cool.  
top | shorts | watch | shoes | bag | sunglasses | eyeliner

And some designers said "screw everyday" and showed collections that were complete fantasy. HubbleScope went dark with a steam punk fairy vibe, Synthetic Rebellion went full-on Rapunzel, and Glamazon Jayne told a woodland nymph romance story.

Capture the essence of the fantasy life with layers of silk, lace, and ruffles. Get the braided goddess look with a faux plait headband and golden braided bag. Classic boots lend a steam punk air while rich lipstick and layered metals give some needed toughness to a very pretty look.
skirt | top | bag | headband | lipstick | necklace | boots

Raw edges and layers of hand-crafted fabrics look artistic and casually cool. Asymmetrical pieced layers that focused on draping and hand detailing were seen at Torn AngelJefferey Steele Designs, Molvar=Stewart, and Katelyn McClain Designs.

To get this style, either do a lot of DIYing or just look for items that are already distressed, like this tee and boots. Items that look hand-painted or hand-crafted, like the skirt and earrings, help add an artsy feel. Added layers and textures, like a draped fringe scarf and crackle nail polish, provide even more levels of visual interest.
top | shoes | skirt | nail polish | scarf | earrings | bag

Minimalism has been a major fashion movement in recent seasons and the designers at Arlo Menswear, Lydia Hopmann, and Oliver P. Zhang, took the look a step further with futuristic influences. Exaggerated shapes, unexpected materials, and solid color-blocking help add to the out-of-this-world feel.

To get this look, opt for silhouettes that are both simple and exaggerated, graphic elements, metallics, and geometric shapes. Space-age influences, like the moon boot-style sandals and astral ring, help propel your style into the future. 
dress | necklace | bag | ring | bracelets | nail polish | shoes

Now tell me: what's your favorite look?

Thanks for reading, now let's connect elsewhere!

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