Fashion Week: M.I.A. Checks Out Alexander Wang’s Construction-Worker Chic; Kim Kardashian and Jessica Szohr Sit Front Row at Jill Stuart; Prabal Gurung Wows Us With Color


An enormous balloon sculpture hovered over the stage at Alexander Wang‘s show at Pier 94. Was it supposed to be a cloud? An alien spacecraft? A giant water raft? Whatever it was, there was certainly enough hot air in the room to send it into the stratosphere.

The front row was packed with a starry crew: M.I.A. gabbed with photographer Ryan McGinley and Lenny Kravitz while her husband, Benjamin Bronfman, played with his phone; Kim Gordon chatted with photographer Terry Richardson; Maggie Gyllenhaal looked cool behind her sunglasses; and Grace Coddington and André Leon Talley represented Team Vogue.

What eventually came down the runway was a collection apparently inspired by construction workers. Yes, you never thought you’d be interested in those cat-calling heavies. But now it turns out that they are on the cutting edge of fashion. We saw white denim wide-leg “carpenter pants” with big pockets on the sides for your phone and wrenches, a mint-green hooded windbreaker in crinkly Tyvek, and a chiffon painter smock that looked freshly used. Even the models (including Agyness Deyn) had white paint smeared in their hair. And, as a testament to the 26-year-old designer’s talent, all of this managed to look fun, exciting, and wearable. So, if you’re not blessed with the pocketbook of M.I.A., it may be time to ask those construction workers where they shop.

Earlier on Saturday, we attended two shows at Lincoln Center. The first being Jill Stuart, whose front row was mobbed by photographers when Kim Kardashian tried to sneak to her seat alongside Kourtney Kardashian and Scott Disick. Gossip Girl‘s Jessica Szohr was also there to see the clothes. And what a lovely collection it was. Stuart’s spring line was wonderfully ladylike, full of romantic ruffles, bows, and lace. A sheer striped dress with petticoats underneath and a belt at the waist had a modern-day Mad Men feel.

Over at Prabal Gurung, who has designed for Michelle Obama, the audience was dazzled by a brilliant color palette of bright blues, saffron, poppy, and coral. Overall, the rising star’s collection was strong and sophisticated, though a few of the dresses suffered from a bit too much fringe (was inspiration taken from a paper shredder?) and pleats. But we could definitely see the First Lady rocking this simple black number. Clearly, clean lines and sexy silhouettes are what he does best.