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For Pre-Fall, Nicole Miller Went Punk

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At Flush and Repeat, Strippers, Porn Flicks, and a Golden Toilet

For Pre-Fall, Nicole Miller Went Punk

Presented at a LES tattoo parlor, her collection was heavy on safety pins, leather, and anarchist prints

BY HILARY SHEPHERD

NEWS  -  DECEMBER 19

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Photos: Courtesy of Nicole Miller

St. Marks Place (that is, the St. Marks Place before the dizzying array of fro-yo shops and Chipotles popped up) was Nicole Miller’s inspiration for her Pre-Fall 2017 collection, which is heavy on safety pins, leather, and symbols of anarchy. And while you wouldn’t typically associate the contemporary womenswear designer—one who’s known for her flirty cocktail dresses and bridal gowns—with punk or counter-culture, her vision was refreshingly different this season. “I’ve just been kind of surprised with fashion lately,” she told Fashion Unfiltered. “There’s been so much ‘sweet’…everything is ruffly and lacy and girly. This is my reaction to all that stuff.” Her reaction went beyond the sartorial, in fact: Miller, who will celebrate her 35th anniversary in June, held her Pre-Fall presentation at the Lower East Side's Daredevil Tattoo, where editors received piercings and ink. (Yes, real ink.) “Everybody’s bored with showrooms,” she said. “I think everything’s about an experience rather than going to a showroom to see the collection. I love the idea of hanging out in a tattoo parlor for a day—I think it made a lot of sense for this collection.” 

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Photos: Courtesy of Nicole Miller

Materials she worked with included silk, cotton, tulle, jersey, and satin, the latter of which was used for a series of metallic dresses with puffed shoulders, and felt like a nod to Hedi Slimane’s final, '80s-tinged collection for Saint Laurent. “Satins look new again. I haven’t done them in a while,” she said. There were also touches of menswear sprinkled in; a standout piece was a pinstriped suit jacket with boxed shoulders. Another was a slip dress with a “post no bills” pattern, which was a reworked version of her classic slip dress from the early '90s. “I think a lot of these are ideas from the past,” she said. “I just wanted to get away from ‘sweet’ and be tougher and more aggressive. I was thinking about myself—I’m not a girly-girl, and I was thinking, What’s going on with everybody? I think everybody’s ready for a change.” 

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Photos: Courtesy of Nicole Miller

In terms of accessories, Miller’s arsenal this season included safety pin-covered bags, rhinestone-embellished velvet slides, and, of course, combat boots and creepers. “I’m so sick of lace and ruffles,” she said, adding that the woman she envisioned was of the no-holds-barred variety. “She’s a real contemporary girl. She does what she pleases. And she goes out," she said, cracking open a PBR. Now that's punk.

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