In the age of the pandemic, NFTs and the climate crisis, fashion is evolving. And Brooklyn — unsurprisingly — is at the forefront of that evolution.
This Sunday, Fashion Week Brooklyn will kick off with a roster of events quite unlike traditional fashion shows, with a focus on sustainable and digital fashion (think "wearable NFTs" and vintage curations).
Organizers BK|Style Foundation have been running the event for 16 years, however it's unlikely that there has ever been one quite like this, where the physical and digital are so intertwined.
"Fashion Week Brooklyn, like Brooklyn itself, is an experience of constant reinvention," BK|Style Foundation Founder and Director Rick Davy said.
One aspect of that reinvention is the rise of digital fashion.
Fashion Week Brooklyn is dedicating two days of the week to shows that highlight digital design, including an NFT Fashion Illustration Exhibition and mini fashion show at the old Pfizer building in Bushwick and an NFT X Fashion event on the Clubhouse App.
"Digital fashion is the new metaverse of fashion, where it's more digital designer jewelry and clothing, and dressing your avatar," Davy explained.
Designers will make specific garments for people to dress their online aliases or characters, and those digital designs can also be realized in the physical.
'80s fashion celebrated
While moving into the digital realm, Fashion Week Brooklyn also has events lined up for those prefer the past to the digital future.
One of the most exciting events for Davy this year is the "Time after Time '80s RETRO-spective", showcasing '80s fashion and future designs inspired by the '80s.
The '80s evening will include a panel discussion on how the past influences the future and features an 80s archive design presentation, followed by a runway show.
Sustainable and vintage continues
Fashion Week Brooklyn has always had a focus on sustainability and showing vintage brands, and that will continue this year, Davy said.
The event features a sustainable fashion market at Bush Army Terminal in Sunset Park, a sustainable kidswear fashion show, and a show next Thursday with a focus on vintage and sustainable brands.
About 60 - 70% of the designers featured in Fashion Week Brooklyn tend to be from Brooklyn, but as the event is international, there are also designers showing from as far afield as Argentina.
Celebrating local designers is central to the event, however, and one show held next Friday in association with Made in NYC is testament to that.
"We have one night to show the designers who actually make stuff in NYC," Davy said.
Fashion Week Brooklyn is also giving back, with a fundraiser for Denim Day NYC, an organization raising awareness about sexual assault.
The week culminates on Sunday, April 10, with the Design Dimension Runway show. The show will display ready-to-wear, couture and avant-garde collections by Black Fives (Puma Collection), Living Museum x COPE NYC collective Ann Spoyer, Items Of Revelry, Irkan Sheikh, Yema, and Jojo Club Kids.
Davy invited those in Brooklyn and beyond to come and be a "be a part of the metamorphosis."
For the full schedule of events, click here.