Badgley Mischka Fall Winter 2018

New York Fashion Week

Seventeenth century Italian painter Caravaggio is named in the notes at Badgley Mischka as an inspiration of the Fall Winter 2018 collection. How so becomes evident during the promenade of exquisite dresses on the runway. Mark Badgley and James Mischka seem to have channeled some of the artist’s use of bright shafts of light to fix his subjects on canvas and render them with a mesmerizing dimensionality. Here, the designers achieve depth and luminosity through floral embroideries and embellishments, diaphanous layering, and shimmering details.

Expectedly, there were many red carpet bait confections on show, several with navel grazing necklines and floor length skirts one can already imagine billowing or swirling up the steps of the next MET Gala. But there were also a number of hauteur worthy sheaths: particularly a collared and belted number in dove grey with cuffed three-quarter length sleeves, and a truly spectacular one in white with a gigantic silver bow on the bodice. Equally impressive were the pink off-shoulder with rose petal embellishments that appear to be cascading down the dress and a scintillating scarlet evening kimono jacket.

The Badgley Mischka show took on added significance following news of Carolina Herrera’s retirement from her namesake label. It now stands among a handful of brands for which design is a discipline of polished restraint. For all the glitz of the leopard print pieces here, not one could ever be within proximity of tacky. For over three decades, the duo has managed the improbable – maintaining the brand’s appeal to both arrivistes and the leisure set by staying true to their shared aesthetic. Still, concessions have to be made to social media’s rise in prominence. This took the form of Badgley Mischka Runway by SAP, an interactive app introduced during the show, allowing real time likes and views of the brand’s products. It wouldn’t be much of a coin toss to assume – had Caravaggio been alive today he too would’ve had an Instagram account.

Images courtesy of Badgley Mischka by Dan Lecca