While there wasn’t anything as controversial as the last VFILES Runway (i.e. an intervention by Young Thug), Runway 8 continued to set the precedent for every new cohort of emerging designers. This year’s winners included Snow Xue Gao, Danielle Cathari and Strateas Carlucci, all of whom showcased a distinct and creative flavor.
Since her debut at the Parsons MFA show a few seasons prior, Snow’s work has always dealt with feminizing and deconstructing traditional forms of menswear. For her recent show, she took it a step further and added in Chinese cheongsam elements. Rather than integrating them together, Snow seems more fond of engaging these disparate elements into a patchwork. Her bright floral printed silks stood in sharp contrast to the khaki and grey plaids that made up the unconventional tailoring.
Cathari followed suit with her new take on a typical athletic tracksuit. The three stripes that race down the legs of a typical pair of track pants were instead cut, copied and pasted across full-body jumpsuits and elasticized mini-dresses. Layered over these were woolen outerwear with ruched trims that came in perfectly coordinating colors. Coming in a Crayola range of hues, Cathari’s runway was simultaneously cool and cute.
And to close Runway 8 were Australian designers Peter Strateas and Mario-Luca Carlucci of Strateas Carlucci. Inspired by fetish wear, thick leathers and glossy materials comprised the bulk of their AW17 collection. The pair went so far as to include a pair of leather chaps as well as a jacket with a Prince Albert piercing on the breast. (Heads up, googling “Prince Albert piercing” is definitely NSFW.) Though their muse was certainly niche, the overall collection had a loose silhouette with wide appeal.