Fashion is at its most exciting when it’s telling a story. That may seem like a lot to demand from a few pieces of fabric, but just as a great writer can craft a heartbreaking tale from an ordinary act in an ordinary day, so a great designer can condense a lifetime of dashed hopes (or at least a bad date) into the neckline of a dress. As we looked over this fall’s collections, we saw a particularly rich assortment of characters, themes, and plots emerge. It seemed natural to link fashion and literature for this issue. And considering how large New York looms in fiction, it was easy to find inspiration in narratives that are set in our own city. Our aim was not to reenact scenes from Great Books in these spreads. Rather, we took particular passages that captured a moment or a mood, using them as jumping-off points for tableaux to tell fall’s fashion stories. Romance, potboiler, tragedy, farce:This season is headed straight for the best-seller list.
The little black dress is best accessorized with a sloe-gin fizz.
Romantic, lushly detailed evening ensembles designed for a sweeping social entrance.
Exotic beauty for humanoids.
The Russian Debutante’s Handbook
Big furs, exotic fabrics, and wild patterns make the Old Country new again.
Valley of the Dolls
The woozy, chunky brilliance of the new mammoth stones.
The Andy Warhol Diaries
Strict lines, bold colors, and graffiti graphics suggest that Pop’s got pop in it yet.