Forget biceps and breasts. The new show-off body part is the shoulder. Just about every designer at New York Fashion Week this go-around has featured a dress or top with exposed shoulders — a look that Donna Karan pioneered as the "cold shoulder" because it's a body part that looks toned no matter what age you are.
Among the first — and the best — to do it for fall is Yigal Azrouël, whose dark collection is brightened up with several looks that expose the shoulder or feature cutouts in the upper body area.
For this collection, Azrouël said he is exploring the "duality of light and darkness, innocence and impurity." He follows the theme with a mix of hard and soft textures — rich-looking jacquard fabrics, patchwork minks, burnout velvets, embroidered lace — and a recurring image of a black rose, which he calls a symbol of "beauty in darkness. “
Even in a moodier frame of mind, Azrouël maintains his mastery of minimalist design, with clean architectural looks and structured silhouettes. But he adds a touch of flair with bell sleeves, a tulip skirt that flares out at the hemline, gowns with grommet lace detail — and, of course, the exposed shoulder. In one instance, he even combines several of his emerging trends — exposed shoulders, bell sleeves, and grommet lacing — in one blouse.
Now, get to the gym and start working out those shoulders.