Alexander Wang staged his AW14 collection in a warehouse space in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, an industrial pocket faraway from public transport. Many joked and theorized about why Wang wanted everyone to make the effort to get there. He even made the invitation heat-activated; in order to read the address, you had to hold you hand over it to reveal palm-shaped gray splotch with black text. This, the concept he chose for an invite in the midst of a Polar Vortex, when body heat is precious.
Since the internet exists and fashion shows are streamed online, it's adventures like these that make us think: Why are we here? Like, physically here, holding a flask embossed with a hashtag and watching a fashion blogger prance through the seats in a teddybear suit. Are we living to Instagram proof that we're invitees? Do we just love clothes? Do we mark time with these seasons, and need to share this group experience so that our ultimate interpretations (editorials, reviews) emphasize our unique viewpoints? "It's your job, now go to bed." is a great and accurate response, but this show location (show-cation!) couldn't have been for nothing.
"Why are we here? Are we living to Instagram proof that we're invitees? Do we just love clothes?"
After the show and its rotating platform and heavy bass, slick boy hair and enticing parkas, everyone herded outside to find their waiting black car. Well, some people hopped on a pre-arranged water taxi or scampered to a sponsored "first come, first serve" bus, but most were on a mission to find one of hundreds of identical SUVs and Lincolns. "I'm waving!" I saw one driver say into the phone to his passenger, but the entire lot was full of men standing up out of their doors, moving an arm. "I'm near the stop sign." "I'm near the big pile of snow."
Once inside the car, we sat in dense traffic, inching out of the parking lot, wheels crunching over old snow. "Can I pee really quick?" one woman shouted to her friends outside my window. It seemed their car was no where to be found, and a wall of ice-covered crates in the alley where my car was stalled was a tempting surrogate bathroom.
"Was this Alexander Wang's 'no new friends' test?"
The man driving the Uber I took to the show asked what we were doing here, so I showed him a video of the stage and the walking and the clothes. He saw exactly what I saw. I told him I didn't know why the show was in the Navy Yard. "Maybe Alexander wanted to cut people out," he said. "I know people who make things difficult when they want to cut people out." Was this Alexander Wang's 'no new friends' test? We saw someone slip and knee-plant in the snow outside the car. "If you're in this industry, it's worth it," my driver (calling him Aman – he's a man) went on. "But if you're out here just because you love fashion, it's not. You shouldn't kill yourself unless you're really passionate."