From runway shows in a deserted subway station to political-statement-making designs, scroll down to catch some of the top highlights from New York Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2020.

Prabal Gurung gets political

“Who Gets To Be American?” Prabal Gurung take a stand against President Trump’s immigration regime.

“Amidst the deep wounds that are severing the unity of our country, I continue to seek the America I came here to be a part of—the America that I know is still there. And so, with the Spring/Summer 2020 collection, we seek to celebrate hope, courage, and present an ode to the true American dream,” Prabal Gurung expressed in his heartfelt show notes. The Nepalese-American employed the season’s runway as a medium for political activism, and sent a diverse cast of models down the catwalk wearing sashes that spelt, “Who Gets To Be American?” — an obvious attack against Trump’s immigration agenda.

Non-traditional show formats

The TommyxZendaya fashion show was hosted in a form of a ’70s-themed block party at the legendary Apollo Theater in Harlem.

This season, many designers took a break from traditional runway formats. Tommy Hilfiger’s see-now, buy-now #TommyNow collection with actress Zendaya debuted at the iconic Apollo Theater, in the form of a ’70s block party complete with live performances, singing and dancing.

Ralph Lauren hosted a Great Gatsby-esque extravaganza, topped off with a performance by Janelle Monae.

Ralph Lauren, meanwhile, hosted a Great Gatsby-esque extravaganza at a sleek and stylish Art Deco-inspired nightclub, the Ralph’s Club, where Janelle Monáe took the stage — donning a black-and-white tuxedo-inspired halter gown from the collection — for a spectacular performance. Tom Ford, on the other hand, invited his guests to a decommissioned subway station, transforming the platform into a runway complete with drinks and real subway workers.

Diversity and inclusivity at its best

Leading the way for diversity across all fashion capitals, models across a range of body types, races and ages could be found in New York this fashion week season. Kate Spade casted 65-year-old ‘Accidental Icon’ blogger Lyn Slater, along with actress Debi Mazar and her teenage daughter, Evelina Corcos, while 9-year-old double amputee Daisy-May Demetre made history by walking the runway for junior couture label Lulu et Gigi. The aspiring model, who had both her legs amputated as a baby, will also appear at Paris Fashion Week later this month.

Elsewhere at Tomo Koizumi, the Japanese designer tapped transgender model Ariel Nicholson to debut seven frill-filled dresses with an extravagant, flamboyant performance, while swimwear label Chromat continued its efforts in inclusivity via a diverse cast, including plus-size model Tess Holliday, who appeared on the runway in a white dress emblazoned with words that read ‘Sample Size’.

NYFW’s first carbon-neutral fashion show

Gabriela Hearst‘s always been a firm believer in sustainable fashion, and this season, the designer orchestrated NYFW’s first carbon-neutral show. She worked with environmentalist group EcoAct to work out the offset amounts necessary to neutralise the carbon footprint created from putting on a show. As a result, she banned the use of hairdryers and hot tools in backstage preparations, and instead, sent models down the runway with hair slicked back in braids.

Cindie Chan
Style Editor
Fashion blogger turned editor, Cindie has spent over seven years covering all things stylish in the digital world. When she’s not busy poring over the latest covetable releases or attending the most talked-about fashion events in town, you’ll find her enjoying some precious downtime with her newborn son and sweet dog Rosy.