As LIM College students, our exposure to the fashion industry circles a wide range of sectors and categories. Early on in our curriculum, we see that trends repeat themselves in cycles which are followed by peaks and falls. This is how the majority of this industry works, which is key to the success of brands. Some designers, like Vivienne Westwood, Jeremy Scott, and Nicola Formichetti, are finding their inspirations from a scene that was most prominent in the ‘80s and is still around today: New York nightlife, and Club Kids. If you’ve ever heard of a place called Limelight or Studio 54, you know about this scene.
Avant-garde fashion and the post-Punk scene in London (that continued its relevance with the designs of Alexander McQueen) pushed seasoned nightlife professionals like Susanne Bartsch, Leigh Bowery, and Kenny Kenny to take the party over to New York. New York was filled with new icons, including James St. James, Michael Alig, and Amanda Lepore. These individuals pushed fashion and beauty to new extents and created a subculture of their own.
Although much of the original scene in the ‘80s died out, especially with the closure of Limelight and Studio 54, the party still continues. Susanne Bartsch now hosts “On Top”, a Tuesday night event on the rooftop of the Standard Hotel that regulars like Amanda Lepore, Joe Arias, and Ryan Burke attend. Trends including cyber punk looks, extreme platform sneakers, and baby doll dresses hit the runway soon after hitting the dancefloor. Moschino, Nicopanda, and Heatherette all feature looks specifically inspired by the trends set out by NYC nightlife.
For more on the original New York Club Kids of the 1980s, please check out Party Monster, located under “DVD PAR” in the DVD section.
For more on Susanne Bartsch’s past and present of nightlife in New York, please check out Fashion Underground: The World of Susanne Bartsch, located under “764.92092 VSM”.
Posted on August 02, 2016 I Blog post by Thomas Goonan (student worker of the LIM College Library)