For Prima Darling’s 2nd yearly roundup I reviewed each post of the year and collected ten (and a couple related posts) that represent the best of 2017. Politics and women’s issues permeated most people’s consciousness in 2017. This is reflected in my choices of posts to revisit. That said the fashion world at large had more than its share of best of 2017 moments, which make up most of the mix.
A long and toxic presidential campaign and Trump’s election left many with pent up feelings of frustration and anger. In record numbers worldwide, women, sporting pink pussy hats, men and children, took to the streets in protest. I chronicled the day in Women’s March New York. Never have I seen anything like it. Hundreds of thousands of people participated peacefully and with a great feeling of unity. I followed up with Feminism Six Months After The Women’s Marches. Lack of focus and fatigue overcame the anger and motivation for action. The spate of sexual harassment cases that came to light recently should bring a renewed sense of urgency to the women’s movement in the coming year.
In April I kicked off a Year of Living Designer Free. Two thirds of the way through the year I’m happy to report that my little experiment has paid off. I discovered many independent brands and emerging designers who produce quality, well designed product that you won’t see all over town. Along the way I shared my finds and will continue to do so even after the year is up.
The subject of the 2017 Costume Institute Exhibit and Met Gala was Rei Kawakubo / Comme des Garcons Art of the In-Between. As a designer Kawakubo is in a class all her own. She’s made a career of reimagining clothing, its relationship to the body and the emotions attached to what we wear. Though the 140 pieces displayed are avant-garde to the extreme there is no denying that Kawakubo has consistently been years ahead of the fashion curve and is one of the most influential designers of our time.
When Vogue UK editor, Lucinda Chambers, was abruptly fired she responded with an article in Vestoj that created a stir for its honesty. While most people go quietly away in an effort to preserve dignity after a harsh dismissal, Chambers courageously brought to light the problem of ageism in fashion. This is a problem designers have been grappling with for years. Prima darling was ahead of the curve on this one posting Fashion’s Dirty Little Secret a week earlier.
All eyes were on Raf Simons and his revival of the Calvin Klein brand in 2017. There’s no denying he garnered plenty of press attention with his unconventional approach of mixing art and commerce. PD weighed in with Drinking The Calvin Klein Kool-Aid.
Not since Ralph Lauren at his horsey height has a designer so completely constructed a world that people are clamoring to enter. 2017 marks Alessandro Michele’s third year at the helm of Gucci and he shows no signs of slowing down. In Alessandro Michele and the Gucci Phenomenon I explore the branding genius and market domination of Michele’s Gucci.
The anti fur movement had a major boost in October of 2017 when Gucci announced they would no longer use, promote or publicize animal fur. I expect this will continue the trend reported on in Fur Free Designers, in the coming year.
The fashion world suffered a devastating loss with the sudden death of the eminent designer Azzedine Alaia. I believe he was the greatest working designer of our time. In Azzedine Alaia The Ultimate Designer I reflect on his brilliant accomplishments.
The appreciation for older women of style continued in 2017. Perhaps the industry is realizing that roughly half our lives will be spent in middle age and up. Or it could be the realization that mature women who live fascinating lives and possess incredible personal style are too rich a resource to overlook. I had the good fortune to land my first interview with one such woman in Beatrix Ost, Woman of Style. Her wisdom and positive outlook inspired me to regularly interview unique people of passion for Prima Darling in 2018. Stay tuned I already have several lined up.
A personal fashion high point of the year was the Debut of Atelier Caito for Hervé Pierre. Pierre is a close friend and a huge talent. Partners Nicholas Caito and Pierre are both products of the great ateliers of Paris. Their combined knowledge and talent for eveningwear is unsurpassed in New York. This is a brand to watch in 2018.
I’ll admit that 2017 was a tumultuous year but I’m grateful for the fantastic growth Prima Darling enjoyed. A heartfelt thank you to every one of you for visiting PD. I hope you’ll join me next year for more interviews, inspiration, special finds and an occasional venting. Please contact me if there are any issues or items you would like to see covered. I send you all a big kiss and wish you peace, health and happiness in the New Year!