Fashion / Style

New York’s Own Trippy Enchanted Forest Hides Fashion Wonders — Kate Spade’s Creative Director Dreams Big in Mushrooms

When Fairytale Dressing Becomes a Reality

BY // 02.27.20

NEW YORK — Instead of staging a full-scale runway show at New York Fashion Week, Kate Spade New York creative director Nicola Glass created a trippy enchanted forest at the brand’s Park Avenue headquarters and invited the fashion press to roam through the wonderland at their leisure.

Glass came up with the theme “as a place of discovery, where everything can be seen in a new light.” “Every piece has something special,” Glass continues. “There’s magic in putting together an outfit you love.”

Kate Spade is known for its novelty handbags, so for her seventh collection, Glass sprinkled an array of new offerings around the Alice in Wonderland setting. Hidden in a garden of flowers and greenery were a handbag in the shape of a red-and-white toadstool mushroom, bunny bags in shades of pink and yellow with contrasting ears, and a handbag that resembled a metal-studded hedgehog (although it probably looks more like an armadillo to anyone from Texas).

Also on display were sparkly mushroom-shaped rings, oversize brooches shaped like the brand’s spade logo, and top-handle handbags stitched with crocheted garden scenes.

While the accessories are a crucial part of the brand, the Kate Spade clothing line has increasingly become an important part of overall sales. This collection feels considerably more grown-up and sophisticated than some previous efforts. Tweed suits, double-breasted jackets and wide-lapel blazers are prominently featured and a variety of dresses that can be worn to the office and transition into nighttime events are a big part of what’s being offered for fall.

Dresses and blouses with Victorian-inspired lace collars and covered buttons are among the collection’s most beautiful pieces. Other choices include fringe-trimmed skirts and tie-blouses, and dresses in bright stripes, expressive floral patterns, animal print or classic polka dots.

Coats also range from the serious — traditional winter wools with a faux fur collar — to the showy — a quilted puffer jacket in a shiny leopard print.

Even though this collection is more sober than some previous efforts, it nevertheless maintains the sense of playfulness that the brand is known for. A khaki trench features psychedelic florals under the collar so the wearer can flash a different attitude when she wants. And pastel sweatshirts are emblazoned with the initials “KS” in dotted florals for a more casual, fun feeling.

While the presentation featured the designs on static mannequins, documentary-like behind-the-scene videos taken during a lookbook photo shoot featuring Karen Elson and other models played on a continuous loop on a big screen, showcasing how the clothes move.

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