During the recent New York Men’s Fashion Week, I walked into Willy Chavarria’s show with low expectations. I don’t mean this in a snooty way either as I had simply never seen or heard of his clothing anywhere before. In fact, I had only first heard of him roughly twenty minutes before his show, as I was sipping on a margarita mingling with industry buddies at the ASOS presentation that took place prior.
Despite my early ignorance, Willy Chavarria’s show is one of the few shows from the latest men’s fashion week that left a lasting impression on me.
To sum it all up: Willy Chavarria’s show proved that fashion is more than just clothes. Chavarria took politics, fashion, social injustices and current times to tackle important messages about Chicano heritage and contributions to America.
The show embodied an emotional stance on America’s current political state-- from the opening theatrics of a coach sending his players across the runway displaying Chavarria’s sportswear, to the development of a traditional runway show that consistently reflected Chicano fashion aesthetic, to even the small detail of the upside down “America” printed on knitwear. To further this discussion of the crossroads of luxe streetwear and politics, a graphic of Maxine Waters made an appearance on one of his t-shirts.
The all latino modeling cast alongside the elements discussed before, ultimately proves that good fashion is no longer solely based on just clothing. Fashion is art, culture and society, and designers, such as Chavarria, that have caught onto this understand that influential fashion has some sort of deeper underlying message that resonates with it’s audience.
By: Isiah S Magsino
View the full runway collection here.