“New York feels good!” Jason Wu said prior to his Jason Wu Collection runway show, noting the high energy and camaraderie currently vibing throughout New York Fashion Week.
“I genuinely want everyone to do well,” he said. “I did the Jason Wu [contemporary] shows for two seasons — but when everyone’s back, New York is stronger in numbers. New York is unique because it’s full of independents, we aren’t owned by big groups. When I started 13 years ago, it was like that. That’s the spirit.”
Taking a hiatus from the runway, as well as working away from his team for the majority of the year, Wu was inspired to get back to using his hands and the grassroots of his business. He felt it was “time for a glamour moment,” and boy did he deliver.
Wu approached spring with a handcrafted, personal feel that started with natural fabrications and new natural dye treatments, in partnership with fabric artist Cara Marie Piazza.
“I’m always known for florals, I love florals — it’s always been my thing — and that really stemmed from my childhood and my father. When I was five, my dad taught me every flower that I know. He has a major garden, it’s his pastime,” Wu explained. “It’s a personal topic for me — usually, it’s through the set or floral prints, but this time I wanted to do it differently.”
The cloudy, painterly effects and organic shapes on Wu’s spring fashions were the result of various natural dye techniques and the abstract, floral effects were applied to washed, natural fabrications — silk habotai, memory cotton, silk charmeuse and performance taffeta fabrications — and whipped up into dreamy silhouettes.
The techniques were used throughout and made glam silhouettes ideal for day to eve, ranging from a variety of sweet and elegant, ruched and knife-pleated dresses, fluid separates and lace-adorned slips all the way to bombastic red-carpet-worthy gowns. The designer peppered in equally special monochromatic moments, as in slinky, sheer knits (a fabulous, floor-length black number) and voluminous gowns with petal-like frills.
As models floated through the floral runway installation (which will be donated to local artists and Pratt students) in the serene, beautiful styles, Wu’s reverie came to life against the panoramic views of the downtown New York cityscape.