Naeem Khan never fails to pull out all the stops. He goes for it every time, and often succeeds with great impact. The utter brilliance of his designs is only enhanced by his prowess over exquisite textiles. Describing his Fall 2017 runway, he says, “it’s a collection in the spirit of the women I have met and the life I have travelled.” Those women may include notable figures such as Michelle Obama and Kate Middleton, who he has dressed in the past, and so it comes as no surprise that the collection was an extravagant, glittering celebration of Khan’s masterful ability.
Tea dresses, capes, jumpsuits, and coats were superbly crafted. Beaded fringe dresses moved with excited fervor, catching the light fabulously. A collection of embellished suits were styled with lace brassieres — playing between formal and casual, work and play. Gowns referenced Art Deco, South American influences, and needless to say, Khan’s own Indian heritage.
However, Khan made his most profound statement after the final sequined gown had completed its walk. In total darkness and complete silence, the voice of the late legendary poet Maya Angelou began to ring loudly throughout the venue. The lights lifted to reveal a radiant black model emerging wearing a stunning golden bridal gown. Slowly navigating down the runway as Angelou’s powerful prose continued, show attendees were left breathless, and for two minutes, it seemed the fashion world was absolutely still: “We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike. We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike.”
By Anthony Palliparambil
See more of the latest coverage from the New York Fashion Week fall/winter 2017 shows here.