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Something’s up. I’m not sure what exactly because Anna is being Anna and not saying much but after a full day of Carolina Herrera, Coach, Frederick Anderson and Ashlyn, last night’s VOGUE WORLD closed down 13th street and ushered in a different type of fashion show experience. It was the culmination of what’s been happening these last few years on the runway. Street vendors selling food, live musicians, dancers, theatrics galore, it was fun but my beef continues. The fashion at these events seem almost secondary. And isn’t that why we’re here?
They asked me to walk with the many has-been supermodels strutting their dusty old stuff but you know what? I declined because those days are over for me I think. It’s gonna take a lot more than Erykah Badu (looking very cool btw), Baryshnikov (who appears to be shrinking), Lil Nas X and bikers doing wheelies to get me back on the catwalk.
Something tells me that this is the future of New York Fashion Week. Please excuse me while I dry my hot and bitter tears.
Winona is wearing Sergio Hudson
Hat by Lisa McFadden Millinery
The casting director from Jason Wu selected Winona, Inc.’s hippiest models. I noticed that and then I saw why. On Friday at Pier 17, he featured slinky dresses, gowns and satin-y trousers that took me back to the glory days of Calvin and Donna, when we’d strut the runway with long legs and mad swivel hips. Those girls were slinging it from left to right!
I got that same vibe from Sergio Hudson on Saturday. His collection was more fun with bright colors and big graphics but the women, all shapes and sizes, were all woman. Not clumping around like zombies. I am so sick of that. Aren’t you? It was good to see Chanel Iman back on the runway. After the show she asked if I’d been arrested lately! Yeah. She’s got jokes too.
Hardly recognized Madonna at Marni’s presentation last night. Perched on stools under the dank-ass Manhattan bridge, my only question was are we trolls now? I’m not trying to be part of the experience, especially after his show in February. Oh yeah. I heard about the dirty warehouse with no seating. My models adored it of course and came back raving. It’s all about the mood and I get that. But hanging out under a bridge? I’m never in the mood for that. Later—
Winona is wearing Alaia
It’s my favorite time of year once again. New York Fashion Week! And The Apple is coming back, baby! I still wear a mask but many don’t anymore. That’s just how it is.
The pre-activities started up in Harlem with the Fashion Row’s annual show on Tuesday evening. Sergio Hudson was chosen Designer of the Year, Issa Rae won the Virgil Abloh Award and Janet Jackson was named Icon of the Year but she did the after-party only. With big hair and an even bigger tutu. I wonder how much distraction she would have caused if she’d actually attended the fashion show?
Christian Siriano’s presentation on Wednesday called for a late coffee. Showing at Elizabeth Taylor’s former townhouse on West 56th, it was loaded with back-in-the-day glamour. Like watching an old black and white movie. Coming down that exquisite sweep of a staircase in hats, gloves, heels and lots of big draping, there wasn’t a wobble from any of my girls. Others had us on the edge of our seats, though. Yikes! Janet showed up. Coco Rocha too. In full gear.
It was at the Monse show on Thursday that news of QEII taking her final bow spread through the crowd. Everybody was buzzing but it was halfway through the presentation when I thought about Charles and Camilla and started giggling. Remember when she was the side piece? Well now she’s a queen.
Life. It’s a bitch, ain’t it? I’ll see you tomorrow!
Winona is wearing Alice + Olivia
Here we go! Another Fashion Week is upon us and breathing fire! There’s runway presentations and digital activations, live streaming, private appointments, interactive activities, and parties up the whazoo. Those who abandoned us are tripping over themselves to get back in. Fashion Week marches on, baby. It’s catch-up time now!
It’s wedding season. And thank you Jesus, Buddha, Eshu, and Muhammad, many people are doing it outdoors and insisting that guests come vaccinated and boosted. I hopped a private jet with Issa and the INSECURE cast (those who were invited) for Jay Ellis’ wedding weekend in Tuscany. The guests were asked to wear earth tones to the ceremony and while I usually blow off those types of requests and wear whatever color I fucking want, my girlie-girl dress by Giambattista Valli, a sweet green, blue and lavender flowery pattern, was sheer enough for lots of earthy brown skin to peek through. Some say I almost upstaged the bride but I call it my contribution to the theme.
Wristlet by Bottega Veneta
COVID cases are up again, dammit. And I’ve been so good about staying safe, uber-picky about which events to attend. It’s all about being outdoors for me this summer and last weekend was a big outdoor weekend! At the Gucci soiree, we roamed the grounds of stylist Elizabeth Saltzman’s spread in East Hampton like happy cattle. Glad I wore wedgies. I caught up with ex-models Christy Turlington and Bethann, designer Rachel Zoe and Spike Lee’s family. The whole crew. His son Jackson is about a foot taller but I swear, Tonya may have carried him and pushed him out but he’s all Spike, through and through. The next day I hauled myself out to Christian Louboutin’s luncheon on the deck of Duryea’s in Montauk. It was a very different crowd, more stuffy than cool, but the ouzo and octopus was crazy good and I made a few new contacts across the Pond. What a lovely way to do business on a warm, Sunday afternoon.
Winona is wearing Duro Olowu
Well, another Met Gala is said and done. The theme this year? Gilded Glamour. A salute to the Gilded Age, late nineteenth century fashion viewed through a modern lens. Many said fuck the theme and as usual they did their own thing. Models Naomi, Shalom Harlow and the Hadid girls did not obey. Others like Janelle Monae, Blake Lively and Cardi B—a killer in Versace—mixed it up. Contemporary with a bit of throwback. And still others, like Sarah Jessica Parker, Adwoa Aboah, Kacey Musgraves and Lizzo’s magnificent opera coat (just the coat okay?) got the assignment and carried it out. I did too. That’s all a part of the fun for me.
I wasn’t feeling the Gilded Age, though. Not at all. But when I saw this original Charles Worth gown from 1898, so simple and luxurious, I knew it was the one.
Now, I couldn’t pull a Kim Kardashian and rip the dress right off of the exhibit mannequin (does anyone honestly believe that bullshit story?) but I did employ Belle’s dressmaker to whip up a replica in deep red satin and a few feet of extra train because you know, you can’t have too much train at the Gala. Finishing with a pair of burgundy Jimmy Choos, a vintage wrap from Valentino and jewels from Harry Winston, tell me whaddaya think? Can you see me as some railroad baron’s dusky-hued mistress from 1898?
2 years in masks! Who could have imagined it? But like the dinosaurs of Jurassic Park, Fashion Week continues to find a way not only to survive but to evolve. Winona, Inc. models have returned to NYC and they’re strutting it out on catwalks from Brooklyn to the Bronx, while video watch parties at the agency are becoming the hot new ticket. Long live Fashion Week!
On the final day of Fashion Week, we held a day long open house at WINONA, INC. for our fully vaccinated comrades. Most of the fashion shows were digital so we put up a movie screen in the upstairs reception area, served wine and snacks, and ran a continuous loop all day. Wouldn’t you know, word spread? Our open house became a hot little ticket! Models drifted in and out, industry folk dropped by to gossip and schmooze—I think this might become a new Fashion Week thing! So until next time…SMOOCHES!