[MANHATTAN, NY.] In most parts of the world when winter arrives we expect there to be snow, when I see the name Snow Xue Gao the last thing to come to mind would be – flowers. Yet, that’s exactly where the young designer took the online-streaming and in-person spectators. With the return to hosting fashion week shows on location, Gao was able to present her Summer Spring 2022 collection hybrid style allowing those from around the world to stream the show through the Runway360 pilot via the CFDA platform. Lucky for you, I was able to arrive to the studio near Bryant Park to witness the show and give you a report on what I saw.
As I was heading to the show it was pouring rain and I was able to bypass the congested traffic that happens to be a direct result from the madness of New York Fashion Week. Upon arriving the attendees had to show proof of vaccinations against covid-19 and we were then guided through the lift into the studio that was completely blacked out. All that was visible to the eye was the well lit area where the models stood in place with spotlights beaming down on the platform as a grand piano took the centre stage providing instrumental music.
Now back to flowers, Gao designed a specific print that was in honour of the summer times she spent in Beijing gardening with her grandmother. The fabric print featured pretty peony motifs that was dedicated to the national flower of China and represents family, joy and happiness that her culture celebrates daily. As I am a visual learner it was nice to see a backdrop behind the grand piano displayed on a video wall that allowed viewers to see the steps in which the print was digitally created, displaying each hand drawn pencil strokes.
The garments shown today were extremely colourful and the peony print coupled with houndstooth and plaid patterns for the structured suits complemented each other extremely well. The balance between masculinity and femininity with exceptional tailoring is Gao’s creative DNA. Perhaps this collection was deemed an express showcase because of the 16 looks, when she usually presents well over 30 looks in seasons passed. The choice of models -regardless of age or artificial limbs- were also impressive because Gao was able to demonstrate how versatile her clientele can be or that her garments were designed for every body type to exist.