New York Fashion Week
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There’s a scene in the classic film City of God where Rocket, the young protagonist, describes the farewell celebration for the city’s only beloved gangster:
“Benny was cool to be a gangster. With his party he managed to bring everyone together:
(Someday I’ll go to the church.)
and Ze, who danced for the first time in his life.
Several minutes before the VFiles FW15 show, I can only describe the atmosphere at Lincoln Center in the spirit of that scene. Music producer and DJ A-Trak was set up at the far corner of the room blasting the type of music that you only wish they played in clubs anymore. On the front row directly in front of me, Kesha and La La Anthony beamed as a trio of extravagantly dressed women initiated a dance off with Cuba Gooding, Jr.—after everyone had finally been seated for the show to begin. For those of you who don’t know, VFiles is that kind of show. They don’t seem to care about the Who’s Who of fashion editors, and really don’t seem to care about hiring the well-known models, either; the show starred a gang of “nodels” who saturated every ounce of the runway with a genuine excitement and glee of simply being there. Standing ovations peppered looks that stood out, as did choruses of audience members shouting (umm, I mean helping) the couple of nodels who made erroneous turns and walked the wrong way, then cheering them on as they righted their paths. Kids who probably never rode scooters before ate on tricks. None of this really matters because these things aren’t really about the clothes. … And yet, it has everything to do with the clothes. The guests who attend a VFiles show understand that this is one of the few times in the entire fashion week season where traditional etiquette gets the side eye; this might be a fashion show, but it’s probably more a celebration, for all things that are cool, and a remembrance that sometimes, it’s rebellion that changes the world.