As we close our examination of 2016, let’s reflect back on aesthetics: let’s look at fashion, art, and design from last year.
While the latter two categories were less on my radar in 2016, I certainly indulged in fashion. A lot was going on to make you laugh and make you cry. We’re getting very close to a post-fashion world but, for now, we’ll continue on in this strange space we call today.
Most Fashionable Art: Thom Pierce’s The Horsemen Of Semonkong
A very beautiful look at the very backhandedly aesthetic African community.
The Worst: Fashion Crocs™
Why did these happen? Oh, right: athleisure and ironic brand loyalties opened the door for this. Thanks, fam.
Favorite New Jeweler: ALL_BLUES
Still obsessed with these minimalist metals.
Favorite Ring: Joanne Burke’s Manhood Ring
I wanted one so, so, soooo badly.
Most Obnoxious: Alexander Wang via Poor People Drag
A rich kid literally serving fast food at a fashion show is just offensive. What an obnoxious ass.
The future of sex is here—by your design, too!
LOL-est Fashion Writing: “Nice Cargo Shorts! You’re Sleeping On The Sofa” by Nicole Hong
Artist Of The Now: Eric Yahnker
His works captured the mania of politics in a way only an artist could be capable of pulling off.
Poor Design, Realized: The Tote Bag As Anti-Environmentalist
Here we were, in 2016, accumulating tote bags only to find that they are incredibly wasteful given they themselves cannot be recycled.
Best Fight: Theophilus London VS. Ian Connor At Collette
This funny situation effectively brought the once Kanye darling to an end. RIP Ian.
Biggest Drama: Marc Jacobs’ Dreadlocks Debacle
As if his dreadlocked showing was bad enough, his response enflamed everything revealing Jacobs, like much of the fashion industry, to be not as enlightened as we had hoped.
Best Trend: Male Metallics & The Continuation Of Texture Tension
The further feminization of man rolled forward delightfully with metallics—sequins, shiny leathers, etc.—for men. Beyond that, combining different textured clothing continued to rise in lieu of pattern clashing. This was a more subtle and luxe way to coolly clash. Yummy yum yum.
Worst Trend: Nepotism
This is driving me insane. From Lily Rose Depp to Rebecca Minkhoff, it’s becoming more and more obvious that these children of rich people are now leading the pack. This isn’t due to talent (Even though some are.) but largely a result of circumstance. This makes me want to blow up the fashion world.
Best Fashion Ad: That Kenzo Fragrance Commercial Featuring Andee MacDowell’s Daughter
What a fab ad! What an example of the worst trend in fashion!
Also Bad: Fashion As Hollywood
Enough of this. Hedi Slimane and Raf Simons are talented but not celebrities…even though they are now. A big part of fashion—The clothing.—has disappeared in lieu of figureheads in companies and on the body.
A Picky Battle: Ending The Menswear Pose
Biggest Fuck Up: #AerieMan
Way to ruin a movement intended to make men of all sizes feel good about themselves. And some were hot! Idiots. Use YouTubers and hashtag teens all you want: y’all still idiots.
One To Watch: Richard Quinn
What a great first showing for this young designer. Let’s keep an eye on him!
Designer Of The Year: Alessandro Michele
The man behind Gucci has taken the once old, boring brand that represents the best and worst of luxury mall to the future by positioning them back in time, transforming the point of view from staid seventies to neon 1970s cat lady future. The result has been a cascade of other brands reaching for what Michele caught and celebrity fans and muses from Hari Nef to ASAP Rocky to Jared Leto have paved the way. Continue on, Michele. Continue on.
Inescapable—Err—Brand Of The Year: Vetements
Ugh. Vetements. Whether you love or hate them, they did the year. Everyone had a bit of them. They’re simultaneously couture yet fuccboi and somewhat delightful to rip off since they’re so intentionally populist. This means of working redefined the fashion game in a bittersweet manner by conjuring poor drag like no one else had done before. Their smartly taking advantage of other brands creating opportunities for things like Fashion Crocs™ to happen. Where will this go in 2017? Likely implosion but, hey, we’ll all be watching.
Show Of The Year: Balenciaga Fall 2016 RTW
From the mind of fashion mad woman Lotta Volkova comes a show so firmly planted between now and 1987. It was a delight. The work has gone under the radar since Vetements—another Volkova project—has gotten all the attention. Expect this Balenciaga showing to have a steep runoff as it represented a bright future that no one else outside of Eckhaus Latta has reached for. Bring it on, Balenciaga. Gimme more.