Alexander Wang voices pride at his immigrant roots as he shows spring 2019 collection in New York

Taiwanese-American designer the latest to use fashion to send a message about US political climate as he mounts cruise wear show modelled by, among others, Lara Stone, Kaia Gerber, and Bella Hadid

PUBLISHED : Monday, 04 June, 2018, 11:42am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 05 June, 2018, 6:15am

The rain held off just long enough for Alexander Wang’s latest collection to make it down the catwalk in New York on Sunday night. The designer opted for an outdoor venue to show his spring 2019 offerings, centred on his heritage. Wang was born in San Francisco, California to Taiwanese-American parents.

In the show’s notes, he explained the season’s concept in more detail: “Today marks a new beginning, a new identity, and a new day for my brand. I want to thank you for being here and sharing this very special moment with me; allowing me the platform to live out my dreams. I share with you my pride in being an American with immigrant roots, and calling wonderful inspiring city of New York my home.”

Wang is the latest in a long line of designers who are using fashion as a way to challenge the current political climate, and the timing of the night’s theme spoke volumes: news of US President Donald Trump’s plans to toughen laws affecting undocumented migrants who arrive in the US as children (commonly referred to as Dreamers) has been making headlines for weeks.

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As for the fashion, the designer’s evolution from party boy to politico was less evident. The show contained 56 looks and there was a mishmash of old and fresh ideas.

New iterations of key elements that have become his signatures sat alongside innovative, one-off pieces, such as a miniskirt formed of four chunky black belts.

More looks from the show

@alexanderwangny SS19 collection #vittoriaceretti #alexanderwang

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Among the strongest outfits were lightweight zip-front tracksuits in velour and nylon, silver metal chain mail vests, an oversized tuxedo jacket, and various coats and shirts with traditional Chinese knot button fastenings.

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On the catwalk, Wang assembled an array of familiar faces and many models of Asian descent. Of-the-moment names like Kaia Gerber, Bella Hadid, and Vittoria Ceretti walked, and in the show’s mid-section surprise guests Lara Stone, Behati Prinsloo, and Mariacarla Boscono appeared. American model Binx Walton closed the show.