Known for his socially conscious advertising, Kenneth Cole always strives to stand out from the fashion pack. Before unveiling his fall collection at New York Fashion Week, he delved into the idea of how we edit our lives through social media with a witty video.
In it, Alan Cumming and Rachel Dratch star as friends who constantly try to one up each other through texts, Twitter and Instagram:
"Of course, designers know all about creating personas — what else are fashionable clothes than a way of projecting an image of who we are, or would like to be, and what we think and where our cultural or urban-tribal images lie," Cole said in his program notes.
"Urban gypsy" is the persona Cole has developed for fall. It aims to be nonchalantly hip, with a mix of layers, textures and fabrics. Looks range from coats to calf-hair shorts to women in pinstripe suits and men in baggy leather shorts — all topped with Pharrell-sized hats. Colors of black, gray and white predominate, with a touch of chile red to spice things up.
Cole's accessories shine, which is not surprising, because that's where he's made his fortune. Footwear for women includes lace-up-to-the-knee combat boots and leather ankle-strap booties with a snakeskin heel; for men, boots come in a variety of styles, from lace-up Velcro to double-zipped with lug soles. A snakeskin cellphone case can serve as a women's necklace, while leather-and-calf-hair backpacks make a men's fashion statement, along with fingerless gloves for both sexes.
The look skews young — probably too youthful for Cole's middle-age celebrity front-row friends, including Jon Bon Jovi, Michael Strahan and Chris Cuomo, all of whom seemed bemused to be at a fashion show but excited to be there nevertheless.
Bon Jovi, who graciously posed for selfies with admirers, admitted, "I don't go to fashion shows, so this in fun."