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Industry + Insights / September 27, 2013 / Katie Flanagan
The Top Ten Designers Who Just “Got It” at NYFW SS14

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We're not sure what warms our hearts more: New York City at Christmas time or New York City during Fashion Week. We could debate our final answer all day without reaching a solid conclusion, however we can tell you this much: they both overcome us with great emotion and unleash an involuntary, childlike excitement within us all. This time around, our excitement is most definitely in bloom despite the annual arrival of fall. It was during Fashion Week that all the 2014 Spring/Summer collections were presented, and believe us when we say they were anything but lacking in the style department. If you weren't able to attend fashion week this year, there's no need to fret because we're breaking down just who’s raising the temps (and hemlines) a little higher. Read on as we recap the top ten designers who simply nailed it for NYFW SS14:

 1. Richard Chai Who He Is: Chai is an American designer who formerly worked among the ranks of Marc by Marc Jacobs. Why He Nailed It: Chai stayed true to his penchant for mixing femininity and androgyny and bringing life to every day street style. His dressed up looks for Spring/Summer 2014 are sure to conquer the task of remaining effortless while being comfortable. 2. Rebecca Minkoff Who She Is: Following her time in her high schools costume department, Minkoff chased her dream of becoming a designer all the way to NYC. A Capsule collection of “I Love New York” T-shirts and a “Morning After Bag,” Minkoff rules on and off the runway with clothing, handbags and accessory collections. Why She Nailed It: Minkoff brought us a Spring and Summer line full of her juxtaposing feminine yet tough pieces. Her clothing is synonymous with edgy; a fact highly palpable during her runway presentation. 3. Joanna Mastroianni Who She Is: With collections that are revered as art and an endless list of celebrity clientele, Mastroianni lives up to her philosophy "to create beautiful unique pieces that are collectable and of the moment at anytime.” Why She Nailed It: Pumping empowering beats as models confidently charged down the runway, Mastroianni also made good on her mission for women to “wear Joanna Mastroianni and feel glamorous, edgy and sexy” in sharp colors with attention to embroidery and beading. 4. Tracy Reese Who She Is: A Parson’s grad with designing in her blood (she grew up sewing and creating one of a kind pieces), Reese launched her first line in 1998 with ready-to-wear and resort-wear. With charming prints and shapes Reese sets out to make her designs feel womanly; a task she executes with lady-like sex appeal. Why She Nailed It: Reese carried her admirers away to a 1950’s Havana with her SS14 show. A mariachi band set the scene as models strutted Reese’s signature lines in feminine florals and color-blocked stripes down the catwalk. 4. DVF Who She Is: While this one may be a no brainer, Dianne Von Furstenberg has been wrapping women up in her celebrated icon, The Wrap Dress for years. Taking a brief hiatus in the 1980’s, Von Furstenberg reemerged much to our delight and came back with a bang. Why She Nailed: Robin Thicke’s Blurred Lines may have been streaming from speakers while the collection debuted, but make no mistake; there was nothing blurred about the fine lines on display. The end result: a summer-in-the-70’s look reminiscent of the days of Disco in New York and the era in which DVF launched. As if the celebrated designer couldn’t outdo herself further, Naomi Campbell graced the runway clad in the collection’s final look! 5. Zac Posen Who He Is: Even in his youth, Posen was smuggling fabric from his grandparents Synagogue in order to create fabulous ball gowns for dolls. Thankfully his early endeavors blossomed into time spent at Parsons and a capsule collection in 2001 for GenArt’s Fresh Faces segment. His looks are seen across red carpets everywhere on the likes of Natalie Portman, Claire Danes and Béyonce. Why He Nailed It: To say all fashion is not art would be a falsity, however Posen did this sentiment one better with architectural lines and perfectly draped pastels for SS14. His ability to make gowns and formalwear look striking rather than stuffy is a gift he shares with the lucky women who sport his looks.  6. Jenny Packham Who She Is: A British designer known for her affinity of gossamer fabrics and intricate beadwork, Packham is is most noted for her collections of wedding gowns and gauzy ready-to-wear dresses. Gaining momentum with the start of her colletion in 1988, Packham has gone on to dress an A-list crowd as well as working alongside the likes of Patricia Field in styling the Sex And the City gals. Why She Nailed It: Floating her deliciously sheer frocks down the runway left the audience feeling like kids in a pastel candy store. To keep the look from being saccharine, Packham paired each look with black Christian Louboutin’s, creating a crave-worthy contrast. 7. Nanette Lepore Who She Is: It’s up for debate whether or not this FIT alum got her start on the East coast or West, but it is undeniable that she has been a hit since her initial boutique opening. One of the few that can add the right amount of boho to a cocktail dress, Lepore has shown staying power and versatility during her career. Why She Nailed It: Lepore’s SS14 runway look provided the audience a showcase of her whimsically structured suits and flirty hemlines. Not shying away from color, Lepore further secured her place on this list getting us super psyched for Spring 2014! 8.Hérve Léger Who He Is: It was advised by Karl Lagerfeld that Hervé Peugnet drop his surname in trade of something more pronunciation friendly. Thus was the birth of Hérve Léger and the bandage dress (circa 1985). Why He Nailed It: If your mind wanders to a dark place of ill-fitting knock-off’s, when it comes to the bandage dress the real deal can only be described as flawlessly flattering. For Spring and Summer ’14, Léger’s is giving us updated A-Line silhouettes with the same bandage design as well as a multitude of fresh designs and textures. 9. Cushnie Et Ochs Who They Are: Founded by Carly Cushnie and Michelle Ochs in 2008, the brand sets out to create modern luxury and “combines a bold sensuality with a raw feminine attitude that is confidently understated.” If that direct quote doesn’t size them up enough, read on to see why they made the list… Why They Nailed It: When Karlie Kloss opens your runway show it says two things: Game. Over. If that is not enough of a nod to the ranks Cushnie Et Ochs has joined since their start, then the presentation of their SS14 collection said the rest. Jewel tones, black & white and the shades in between were the canvas for angular cutouts and dramatic lines. This is a look sure to keep you feeling cool and looking hot all spring and summer long.    
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