Bring Fashion Week to Work


New York Fashion Week kicked off yesterday and the shows are in full swing. Zac Posen has often said that Fashion Week is “fashion-tainment”. He started saying that several years ago. Runway shows these days cater as much to consumers as they do to the press. Brands like Tom Ford and Burberry are transitioning from the traditional fashion calendar (you know, show fall clothes in spring and spring clothes in fall) to a “see now, buy now” schedule in which season-appropriate collections hit stores days after the show. Brands like Tommy Hilfiger and Givenchy have given consumers the opportunity to purchase tickets to their shows. Many shows are live-streamed to internet users worldwide. Yet the most obvious and practical consequence of prioritizing the consumer can be seen in the designs themselves. Fashion Week will always have strange cutouts and counterintuitive layering, but more often than not the runway looks are perfectly wearable in day-to-day life. Even at work.

Yes, designers are  sending office-appropriate outfits down the runway. But these are not your average pantsuits. Here are 10 brands that present professional attire at its very best.


TSE — This monochrome white outfit is sharp as can be, with an eyecatching button in compliance with every dress code.

Adeam RTW Spring 2017

A white button-down always works. The sophisticated color palette and conservative shape make these dress pants desk-ready.

Camilla and Marc RTW Spring 2017

CAMILLA AND MARC — Godet pleats and raised seams set this classic black dress apart.

Escada RTW Spring 2017

A cowl neck and skinny sash add definition to a conservative white dress.

M Missoni RTW Spring 2017
M Missoni

With geometric pops of color, this coat will make the outfit. Just add pants!

Kendall + Kylie RTW Spring 2017
Kendall + Kylie

It’s hard to go wrong with a matching top and skirt, and the peplum and trumpet flares dress them up. Pull up the shoulders and you have a chic boat neck.

Jeffrey Dodd RTW Spring 2017
Jeffrey Dodd

A white button-down with a black pencil skirt will be welcome at any workplace. Button up the top and you’re good to go.

Kobi Halperin RTW Spring 2017
Kobi Halperin

This might seem like just another black dress at first, but with a closer look, the Swiss dots bring it to life.

Christina Economou RTW Spring 2017
Christina Economou

A high-necked shell and dress pants, with a kick.

Rejina Pyo RTW Spring 2017
Rejina Pyo

A pale blue button-down is a refreshing substitute for white. The paper bag waist takes these black trousers to another level.

Photo credits:

New York Fashion Week — September 9, 2015

Sarah Sophie Flicker and Debbie Harry at the Rachel Comey presentation in Red Hook, Brooklyn

Most everyone has a creative side, whether they are in a creative profession or not. I consider fashion buying a creative profession to some degree, but when I was in high school I engaged in the more obviously creative activities of sketching and sewing. My former boss was an investment banker and a commercial real estate broker before becoming a clothing designer. A family friend teaches calculus and physics and has released a series of studio albums as a singer and songwriter.

Brette Coat

A coat that I designed and sewed when I was 15

Even if we are all creative, it is not always understood where this creativity comes from. It’s tempting to say it simply “comes to you”, as if out of nowhere. Based on all of the poetry I have written while caffeinated, I think creativity is a product of an active, passionate state of mind. Yet sometimes we don’t give our environment enough credit. My final theory is that creativity comes from the convergence of an active and passionate mind and the right external stimulus, although remembering the exact source of our inspiration can be difficult considering all of the environmental stimuli we are exposed to at every minute.


The talented designers of New York Fashion Week tend to identify exactly where the inspiration for a given season’s collection came from, a degree of recollection that is an art form in itself. Below are some lines from Wednesday and their creative origins.

Big Sur

See By Chloé RTW Spring 2016

See by Chloé

Clare Waight Keller was inspired by Big Sur, California.

Yes Rasta

TSE RTW Spring 2016


Tina Lutz was inspired by Jamaica and dancehall culture, specifically the books “Dancehall: The Story of Jamaican Dancehall Culture” by Beth Lesser and “Yes Rasta” by Patrick Cariou (pictured above). 

Peter Beard Iman

Tamara Mellon RTW Spring 2016
Tamara Mellon RTW Spring 2016

Tamara Mellon was inspired by the concept of a tribal, gypsy warrior woman; Peter Beard photography (his photo of Iman pictured above); African carved wood sculptures; and Maasai craftsmanship.

The Circus

M Missoni RTW Spring 2016
M Missoni RTW Spring 2016

Angela Missoni was inspired by the circus.

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 01: Sunset over Manhattan on Day Eight of the 2014 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 1, 2014 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Hellessy RTW Spring 2016
Hellessy RTW Spring 2016

Sylvie Millstein was inspired by the view of the sunset from a city rooftop.
Robert Irwin

Lisa Perry New York RTW Spring Summer 2016 September 2015
Lisa Perry New York RTW Spring Summer 2016 September 2015

      Lisa Perry was inspired by the Robert Irwin installation “Who’s Afraid of Red, Yellow, and Blue?”

Haute Couture


À Moi

Alejandra Alonso Rojas was inspired by “the elevated sartorial traditions of the past” (Allende). Charles Worth haute couture gowns from the nineteenth century shown above.




Minsoo Chung was inspired by the colors used by Gary Hume, the cut-outs of Henri Matisse (pictured above), and the shibori prints of Korea.

Warm 2

Warm RTW Spring 2016


Tracy Feith was inspired by his old line and Warm, the Nolita boutique for whom he designs. This meant giving beachy clothing a new sophistication.

Judith Plant

Rachel Comey

Rachel Comey

Rachel Comey was inspired by “the degradation of fabrics” and the essay “The Circle Is Gathering” by Judith Plant, pictured above (Garced).

Happy NYFW!

Photo Credits:

(Sarah Sophie Flicker and Debbie Harry) — Steve Eichner    (Designer presentations) — WWD Courtesy Photo

(blurry lights) —   (Big Sur) —      (Yes Rasta) —

(Peter Beard photography) —    (circus) —   (sunset) —

(Irwin installation) —    (Charles Worth gowns) —

(Matisse cut-outs) —    (Warm boutique) —    (Judith Plant) —