(NEW YORK) Anna McCraney, winner of Bravo's The Fashion Show, presented her FW 2010 collection, CARNIVALE, Saturday night at Collective Hardware on the Bowery.
Yes, the pics are a little...artsy. Sorry. My camera died right before the show started, so I borrowed my friend's iPhone, which has no flash, and the models were walking pretty fast, so, using available light, with movement, usually ends up...artsy. But I think you can get the show's vibe with these images; just pretend Deborah Turbeville shot them.
Interesting that Turbeville's name comes to mind----because McCraney's collection was totally Deborah Turbeville: skeletal models (seriously skeletal), crimped, red hair, '30s make-up, and the occasional walking stick. It was kind of like watching The Bob Newhart Show, if Fassbinder, or Hans-Jurgen Syberberg had suddenly stepped in to replace Newhart's director (Peter Bonerz, according to IMDB).
Carnivale was presented at a small gallery-type space on the Bowery, with a bar in front (not free, by the way), and rows of chairs in the back of the space, divided by a floor-level catwalk.
Not being a professional fashion journalist, I thought the staging was tight, if, alas, the clothes were a bit underwhelming: the great music selection (from Viennese waltzes to Le Tigre) set a ragged, '80s downtown vibe, and the models were interesting. In fact, one onlooker, a friend of the designer, told SAVAGENYC that this show was the first time McCraney had used professional models.
The investment seems to have paid off.
Unfortunately, not too many of the individual pieces struck much of a chord.
The ladies who weren't trying too hard looked the best, offering awkward sweaters, denim skirts, leggings and dune boots which could only have come from Bedford Avenue's infamous Salvation Army store.
Looking at McCraney's blog from Bravo's The Fashion Show, it's hard to fathom how this designer could have come up with such a dud of a show.
On Bravo's website, McCraney proved herself to be a master at coming up with surprising juxtapositions of fabrication, pattern and silhouette, but that anarchic aesthetic didn't come through in this too-safe show.
If McCraney's show left viewers hungering for more edgy fashion, the unofficial "after-party" at St. Jerome's bar on Rivington brought out enough East London-style punks to staff a whole slate of Bravo fashion competitions.