New York Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2014: Richard Chai LOVE

Wine leather coats. Asymmetrical hems. Black lace florals. Plaid plush t-shirts. These are a few of my favorite things! From Richard Chai's Fall/Winter 2014 LOVE collection, that is. The show, which also featured Chai's Fall/Winter 2014 Men's Collection, started with the sound of The Bangles' cover of "Hazy Shade of Winter" and a variety of textures followed, from silky asymmetrical dresses to faux fur turtlenecks to sequins. While the first sight of them may have been jarring, the sum of each look was greater than its parts. I never would have thought to put leather and sequins on the same model at the same time, but when Chai did it made sense, eye-opening, thought-provoking sense. It's nice when someone can open your mind to clothing possibilities with a single outfit. It's almost like he looked at his collection and said, hey, why can't these go together? And made us ask ourselves the same question upon viewing them. That's been an all-too-unusual experience for me, and I frankly wish it would happen more often. 

Chai's cold weather ensembles had a grunge flair, but not the same, deliciously messy one to which we've become accustomed. We definitely saw the influence of grunge, but weren't overpowered by costume-y remakes of times past. Instead, Chai used the era to accent his own point of view, adding the aforementioned black lace to oversized jackets and leather (in a collaboration with Andrew Marc) to a black needlepunch sweater. We also a bold use of shine and sequins on items that, even though they were both shiny and sequined, still spoke quietly of Chai's original influence. For the full collection, check out the great slideshow on Style.com.

Makeup, by Romy Soleimani for Beauty.com, featured Kevyn Aucoin products. Eyes were softly lidded with Aucoin's Loose Shimmer Shadow in Jade, for high shine and Precision Liquid Liner on the bottom for a subtle, soft smoky look. The rest of the face was clean, with only the brand's Sensual Lip Balm on the lips. Hair was swept to the side in a stylishly lackadasical swoop, purposely and properly mussed as only hairstylists can do. 

I had the opportunity to head backstage before the show, and took a few snaps for you to get in on the action. And of course there are shots from the show as well! Check them out here.