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Calvin Klein show delivers political message at Fashion Week

Associated Press logo Associated Press 2/11/2017 By The Associated Press
Anna Wintour and Sarah Jessica Parker attend the Calvin Klein runway show during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff) © The Associated Press Anna Wintour and Sarah Jessica Parker attend the Calvin Klein runway show during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

NEW YORK (AP) — Crunchy snow and ice greeted designers, models and fans at New York Fashion Week on Friday, a day after a snowstorm pummeled the city. What visitors got was a high-profile debut and a political message at Calvin Klein, some psychedelic designs (and more politics) from Jeremy Scott, a focus on femininity from Jason Wu, and not one but two collections by Kate Spade.

The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff) © The Associated Press The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

Among the day's highlights:

The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff) © The Associated Press The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

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Naomie Harris attends the Calvin Klein runway show during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff) © The Associated Press Naomie Harris attends the Calvin Klein runway show during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

CALVIN KLEIN: A MESSAGE FROM THE RUNWAY

Karlie Kloss attends the Calvin Klein runway show during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff) © The Associated Press Karlie Kloss attends the Calvin Klein runway show during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

The message could not have been clearer or more pointed: Raf Simons' debut collection for Calvin Klein opened and closed with the David Bowie song "This is Not America."

Raf Simons, left, chief creative officer, and Pieter Mulier, creative director, greet the audience after presenting their Calvin Klein runway show during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff) © The Associated Press Raf Simons, left, chief creative officer, and Pieter Mulier, creative director, greet the audience after presenting their Calvin Klein runway show during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

"When you have a voice, you should use it," Simons said backstage just last week at his own label's menswear show. And now, for his much-awaited bow Friday morning with new employer Calvin Klein — for which he has moved to New York — the Belgian designer was using his.

The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff) © The Associated Press The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

The soundtrack wasn't the only means Simons used to put across his message. A day earlier, Calvin Klein had sent guests patterned bandanas, with a note saying: "Unity, inclusion, hope and acceptance: Join us at Calvin Klein in wearing the white bandanna. #tiedtogether."

The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff) © The Associated Press The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

The clothes, too — designed along with the label's Pieter Mulier — were meant to display an inclusive message, sort of a melting pot of styles. "It reflects the environment," Simons wrote in the show notes. "It is the coming together of different characters and different individuals — just like America itself."

The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff) © The Associated Press The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

There were nods to the American West for both women and men, with denim jackets over loose jeans, or colorful cowboy-style shirts. There was sporty America, in striped tube-sock sleeves — similar to the arm-warmers shown by his men's label. There were crisp business-like suits in black and white, and coats in colorful quilt patterns.

The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff) © The Associated Press The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

For some flash, there were a number of garments — dresses, coats, skirts — encased in a layer of plastic, looking like cellophane wrapping on a gift. In one dress, the plastic shielded a burst of feathers in white, yellow and black. A golden yellow furry coat also had this laminated effect. Another common embellishment was a silver metallic flower, appearing on black leather jackets or sheer mesh tops that left little to the imagination.

The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff) © The Associated Press The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

Among the celebrity attendees were Gwyneth Paltrow, Julianne Moore, Sarah Jessica Parker, Naomie Harris, Kate Bosworth, Greta Gerwig, Brooke Shields, director Sofia Coppola, and supermodel Lauren Hutton.

The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff) © The Associated Press The Calvin Klein fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week in New York, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017. (AP Photo/Diane Bondareff)

Hutton praised both the show's contents and its messaging.

Models display clothing from the Spring 2017 collection by Kate Spade in New York. (AP Photo/Nicole Evatt) © The Associated Press Models display clothing from the Spring 2017 collection by Kate Spade in New York. (AP Photo/Nicole Evatt)

"He's a new miracle," she said backstage of Simon's arrival at the label, a post the former Dior designer has taken over from Francisco Costa. Asked whether politics should have an expression in fashion, she said: "I think that's what all art is for. Fashion, if it's good, always has something to say about society."

Models display clothing from the Fall 2017 collection by Kate Spade in New York. (AP Photo/Nicole Evatt) © The Associated Press Models display clothing from the Fall 2017 collection by Kate Spade in New York. (AP Photo/Nicole Evatt)

Designer Diane von Furstenberg also was among the front-row guests. She wore a large button that said: "Fashion starts with Planned Parenthood."

Fashion designer Jeremy Scott walks the runway to applause after showing his latest collection during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews) © The Associated Press Fashion designer Jeremy Scott walks the runway to applause after showing his latest collection during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

"It's not about politics," she explained. "It's about women's rights, about the body, and about human rights."

The fashion collection from Jeremy Scott is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews) © The Associated Press The fashion collection from Jeremy Scott is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

— Jocelyn Noveck

The fashion collection from Jeremy Scott is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews) © The Associated Press The fashion collection from Jeremy Scott is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

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The fashion collection from Jeremy Scott is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews) © The Associated Press The fashion collection from Jeremy Scott is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

JEREMY SCOTT RIFFS ON ICONOGRAPHY — AND POLITICS

The fashion collection from Jeremy Scott is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews) © The Associated Press The fashion collection from Jeremy Scott is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

There were Jesus portraits on velvet. Sequined Cleopatra-style headdresses. A white feathered tiara several feet high. A babydoll nightie saying "Love Stinks." A tearful Marilyn Monroe face. Sparkling gold go-go boots. A guy in a kilt AND ripped jeans. Another guy draped in a stole that looked like a toy fox.

The fashion collection from Jeremy Scott is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews) © The Associated Press The fashion collection from Jeremy Scott is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

Yes, it was Jeremy Scott, awakening the tired, cold Fashion Week masses Friday evening with his psychedelic designs.

The fashion collection from Jeremy Scott is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews) © The Associated Press The fashion collection from Jeremy Scott is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

Backstage before the show in a packed West Village venue, Scott said he had been thinking about iconography — and politics.

Kylie Jenner, left, and Sofia Richie are seen at Jeremy Scott's fashion presentation at Skylight Clarkson Square on Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (Photo by Christopher Smith/Invision/AP) © The Associated Press Kylie Jenner, left, and Sofia Richie are seen at Jeremy Scott's fashion presentation at Skylight Clarkson Square on Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (Photo by Christopher Smith/Invision/AP)

"I was thinking about how Elvis and Marilyn and Michael Jackson and Jesus are all kind of worshipped on the same altar," Scott said. "And that's kind of how we've gotten ourselves into a situation of having an entertainer for president. ... And then of course, at the same time (I was) trying to make fun clothes that I love and that I think my friends and fans will love."

Debbie Harry, right, is seen at Jeremy Scott's fashion presentation at Skylight Clarkson Square on Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (Photo by Christopher Smith/Invision/AP) © The Associated Press Debbie Harry, right, is seen at Jeremy Scott's fashion presentation at Skylight Clarkson Square on Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (Photo by Christopher Smith/Invision/AP)

He said was going for an effect of "'60s boudoirs mixed with streetwear elements like hoodies and T-shirts and sweatshirts ... collaged in a way like they've been sawed in half and smashed into one."

The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson) © The Associated Press The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

Scott also felt inspired, he said, to take a political stand with his designs. "How can there not be a political statement today? ... You know I think everyone needs to kind of speak out. Everyone needs to do their due diligence as a citizen to make their voice heard because that's the only thing that will protect us."

The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson) © The Associated Press The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

To underscore that point, he wore a shirt saying, "Our voices are the only thing that will protect us" — with what he said were phone numbers of members of Congress on the back. He urged others to make their political views known to their representatives, and not to feel "too cool for school" to do that.

The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson) © The Associated Press The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

"Yes, I can still make fun clothes and have a good time, and there's no wrong in that," he said. "But you still need to have a moment to really do your due diligence as a citizen now more than ever."

The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson) © The Associated Press The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

Celebrity attendees included Debbie Harry and Kylie Jenner.

The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson) © The Associated Press The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

—Nicole Evatt and Jocelyn Noveck

The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson) © The Associated Press The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

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The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson) © The Associated Press The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

A MILESTONE FOR JASON WU

The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson) © The Associated Press The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

It was back in 2009 that Jason Wu vaulted to prominence as the chosen designer of Michelle Obama's first inaugural gown. For good measure, he repeated the feat four years later.

The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson) © The Associated Press The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

This year, he's celebrating the 10th anniversary of his label, and he marked the occasion Friday with a display of wearable, elegant designs at the St. Regis Hotel that showed his talent for turning out pretty yet unfussy clothes.

The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson) © The Associated Press The Jason Wu fashion collection is modeled during Fashion Week, Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

The collection was focused on "the luxurious femininity at the core of the house," Wu said in the show notes. It featured soft suits and flowing dresses in fabrics like velvet, tulle, and chiffon. A shoulder-baring dress and a billowing top were both fashioned of a black gauzy material dotted with pale green velvet. Colors ranged from "lipstick reds" to "amber golds" to "juniper greens." Accents included grommets and pearls. Printed chiffons were embellished with what the label said were "thousands of crystals, blurring the line between fantasy and reality."

Among the celebrities present were film actress Diane Kruger and model-actress Amber Valletta. But the star of the front row — at least judging from the oohs and aahs coming from photographers — was Adriana Lima, the Brazilian Victoria's Secret model, in a hot pink satin dress and black leather jacket. She was photographed with the jacket on, but her later removal of said jacket was enough to get the shutters clicking again furiously.

—Jocelyn Noveck

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KATE SPADE TURNS IN TWO LINES

Kate Spade just wants to have fun.

The playful womenswear brand presented two collections Friday, complete with pom-pom accents, colorful fringe and a cake-shaped purse.

"I love the vibe. I love that it's so flirty and feminine and very chic, but also has like a sense of humor to it," said actress Victoria Justice during the event at New York's famed Rainbow Room.

Leighton Meester, Jamie Chung and Camilla Belle also braved the cold for the morning presentation held on two floors with a dual purpose: A spring line of see-now, buy-now clothes and the fall 2017 collection inspired by 1920s Paris.

The small, buy-now spring line included fun accessories like wicker purses in the shape of camels and monkeys, and a large straw hat with colorful, dangling tassels.

There were jean dresses with floral appliques and denim overalls paired with a cozy, fringed turtleneck sweater.

Another floor featuring Spade's fall looks showcased feminine dresses and skirts with a moody edge, in black lace, leather and faux fur.

Models posed, lounged and rotated around the center of the room. One snacked on candies hidden in her black and pink gold-studded bag.

"It's just very fun and young and fresh," said Belle. "So exciting, colorful and happy and just kind of puts a smile on your face."

—Nicole Evatt

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