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Men's wear takes off on its own

Tuesday, July 14, 2015 - 01:53

Menswear designers present their new collections at the revamped New York Fashion Week Mens. Rough Cut (no reporter narration)

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Men's wear finally grabs the spotlight on the biggest U.S. fashion runways on Monday (July 13), as New York City catches up to other global design capitals already giving men's styles their due. More than 50 designers will unveil their looks, hoping to catch the eye of discerning buyers and critical editors who will choose their favorites for next year's spring and summer seasons. "I think it's exciting that actually here in New York that mens has its own dedicated fashion week. Many times its been rolled into the women's collections and publicly hasn't really been giving the predominance that it really deserves. There is so much great talent here in New York, there is such a great contribution from the men's designers that work here in the city. I'm thrilled to see that they are having their own moment," said Ken Downing, the senior vice president, fashion director for U.S. department store Nieman Marcus. The four-day event by the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) is the New York debut of Fashion Week: Men's. Until now, men's wear shows traditionally have been mixed in with hundreds of women's shows in twice-a-year events in the city. "It's really a business decision. One that pulls the men's shows out of the women's market and aligns their shows with the mens market. The mens wholesale buying period is right now. Before there was a disconnect. And now you show and you sale at the same time which makes sense," said CFDA CEO Steven Kolb. U.S. men's apparel sales totaled $62.7 billion (USD) in the 12 months ending May 2015, according to the NPD Group, a trend and sales tracking company, just over half the total for women's apparel over the same period. Men's apparel sales grew 2 percent, just short of the 3 percent rate for women's. Trained architect Carlos Garciavelez launched his business early in 2015 and is excited to be showing his second full line. "The collection centers around light, about the ephemeralities of the qualities of light. And then can we translate that into the body and wear ability about picking and showing, you know, some of them are more subtle, some of them are bright, but it is more about the way you reveal. Maybe a little adventurous part that we have inside," said Garciavelez, who also teaches at Harvard. London, Milan and Paris already hold separate men's Fashion Weeks. Recent men's styles in Europe ranged from a fanciful see-though black lace jumpsuit to crinkled nylon jackets and shoes with light-up soles. New York based designers Raul Arevalo and Brad Schmidt founded their brand Cadet in 2011 and found inspiration in wartime. "The collection is inspired by a vintage photograph of World War II paratroopers who invaded Normandy - they were the first to come into Normandy. And I was so inspired by the picture because it's very timeless it's very masculine, but what I did was, we updated the silhouettes and we updated the fabrics. So we're using a lot of tech fabrics, we're using natural fabrics, such as cotton, merino wools," said co-founder Arevalo. Feeding the trend, more public figures and celebrities are now style icons, younger workers have transformed workplace attire and technology gives consumers quicker access to styles, they say. Other brands showing on the first day included Boyswear, CWST and David Hart. New York Fashion Week Mens will run from July 13 until July 16.

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Men's wear takes off on its own

Tuesday, July 14, 2015 - 01:53