With two seasons in, New York Fashion Week: Men's is still a let down, and is in need for improvement. Fashion shows create a mode for designers to show a consistent vision, in an environment that reflects the mood and inspiration of their collection. It’s a chance for labels to approach clothing from an artistic perspective instead of a commercial one. Mainly, fashion weeks are an ideal opportunity for a city to showcase its cultural power. New York Fashion Week: Men’s currently presents many of its flagship shows at one location, Skylight Clarkson Sq., an overly branded microcosm of the city’s commercial attitude towards fashion. Due to this, it feels more like a tradeshow than an incubator for new ideas. Most shows here in Europe take place in old theaters, re-purposed historic buildings, bicycle velodromes, and even featured buses.
New York City’s architecture is often as inspiring as its best collections, if not more so, and the fashion world’s relationship to the city needs to be more intrinsic if it hopes to ever compete on a global cultural level. There’s a reason some of America’s best designers don’t show there, and that’s because there’s simply more of a prestige feeling to debut a collection in Paris, London or Milan than in New York. With most of these labels still producing in the New York, it just doesn’t do justice to a talented designer to show in a city that needs them more than they need it.