NYFW and Other A-Balmain-ations

As someone who hates to say goodbye to the summer I’ve been searching for a few things to look forward to once fall rolls around. I was reminded of one such event on Thursday morning in the form of an email from WME-IMG New York Fashion Week (Yup, that’s the new initial heavy moniker) calling for media registration. First world problem: the registration website solely features the dreaded “spinning wheel of death.” Is it possible that there are too many logo designers and not enough IT people involved here? See: The New York Times article I understand that ad men and women are way more fashionable than techies but that’s not really an excuse. I fear that this is a just a hint of the confusion that is bound to befall Spring/Summer 2016’s fashion week legacy.

Jourdan Dunn, Olivier Rousteing & Kendall Jenner
at Bill Board Music Awards

Besides NY fashion week there’s another event that’s a little further on the horizon but no less eagerly awaited by fashionistas: Balmain x H&M collection will be arriving (and no doubt departing) on November 5th. Ever since Kendall Jenner and Jourdan Dunn stepped out on the red carpet with Olivier Rousteing at the Billboard Music Awards last May, the frenzy has been building for what appears to be several adaptations of throwback yet signature Balmain looks. These looks are to include Kendall’s awesome navy velvet and pearl encrusted lapel-less long jacket (inspired by the AW12 collection), and Jourdan’s rouched mini (AW13). Accessories that are hinted at  include thigh-hugging suede boots featured on both girls and a wide metal belt cinching Jourdan’s skirt.

The original Balmain jackets for Men

Balmain, currently enjoys a clientele of the impossibly hip, and super stylish including Rihanna, Naomi, Kardashian/Jenner girls. The brand has earned rapper cred and been name dropped in songs by Nicky Minaj, Iggy Azalea and others. These uber rich and privileged folk are known as the Balmain Army. Rousteing’s hashtag #HMBalmainNation is an effort to democratize his fashions and make them “somewhat” available to the masses. That is to say, the masses that have the time and inclination to stand in a “mass”-ive line or possess flying fingers for what’s bound to be a nasty, short and brutish online ordering experience.

Cecilia De Bucourt women’s version

I recently admired a ” Balmain-inspired” tribal beaded jacket from their men’s SS2015 collection when I saw it in a women’s clothing store window. At around $600, the women’s version approached H&M prices; a mere fraction of the $22K of the actual Balmain. The window version was turquoise, inside there was a red one which I loved even more. The designer of the female iteration of the cropped jacket is Cecilia de Bucourt, an Argentine model/photographer/pole dancer– or so says her bio. Her clothes have been seen on Heidi Klum who bought her gladiator top in all colors. The line has a definite rocker sensibility as many items have chains, beads or studs and can be found on her website ceciliadebucourtonline.com or at French Corner Soho’s Lexington Avenue and 74th St. store.

Cecilia de Bucourt Bohemian Rocker Fringe Bag

I also love the beaded and fringed matching handbags online. A similar look for less (around $66) was seen at Mixology, 83rd and Third Ave, in the form of a beaded bag which could be used as a clutch or as a shoulder bag with its chain.

Alice + Olivia jacket

Beaded clothing and accessories can be tricky.  This Alice + Olivia jacket could almost skew overly retro due to the bugle beads but is saved by the trendy tribal pattern. One thing to remember, no matter what their pattern, these jackets tend to be on the weighty side. Maybe I can skip the gym?


– Laurel Marcus

Laurel Marcus

OG journo major who thought Strunk & White's "The Elements of Style" was a fashion guide. Desktop comedienne -- the world of fashion gives me no shortage of material.

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