NY Fashion Week, Day 5: Clothes are warm, inviting on cold winter day

The Associated Press

Fashion from the Tommy Hilfiger Fall 2014 collection is modeled during New York Fashion Week on Monday Feb. 10, 2014. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

Associated Press + More

By The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — It was once again winter — cold, cold winter — that dominated the mood on the fifth day of New York Fashion Week, with designers presenting variations of warm clothes on a particularly freezing day.

Carolina Herrera, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen's The Row, Kenneth Cole, Tommy Hilfiger, Thom Browne and Zac Posen were among the designers presenting their fall-winter collections on Monday.

Shows were being held at the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week tents at Lincoln Center and at various locations throughout the city.

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TOMMY HILFIGER PRESENTS RUSTIC SCENE (DON'T STEP ON THE MULCH, PLEASE)

Tommy Hilfiger's show for fall 2014 on Monday presented a much more idyllic version of the arctic conditions that have defined New York Fashion Week.

Held inside the cavernous Park Avenue Armory, Hilfiger's backdrop for his collection was, like the city, a wintry one. But instead of urban slush, he provided a scene that was snowy and rustic. A log cabin and skis sat in the background, while fir trees, boulders and fake snow mixed with mulch adorned the area around the wooden runway. ("Don't step on the mulch, please," a security guard warned guests.)

The clothes fit the chilly ambience: There were plenty of parkas, cozy sweaters and much faux fur. Plaid was a recurring pattern, featured on wool skirts of varying lengths and long mohair dresses. There were also lots of fringes, on sweaters, skirts and dresses. The colors were muted; dark blues, grays, maroon, black and cream, either alone or as a pattern, dominated the hues. Most of the models wore toasty knit caps to top off their outfits.

The collection was described by Hilfiger as having an "adventure-ready spirit."

— Nekesa Mumbi Moody, http://www.twitter.com/nekesamumbi

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ASHLEY AND MARY-KATE OLSEN PRESENT MINIMALIST BUT LUXURIOUS WINTER WEAR ON A FRIGID DAY

A frigid, brutal wind was whipping off the nearby Hudson River as one approached the unassuming building in Manhattan's West Village where Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen base their high-end fashion label, The Row.

Inside, though, waiters were offering cups of hot tea to the select crowd invited to inspect the sisters' fall 2014 collection on Monday. And luckily, the clothes were even warmer and more inviting.

The display, in a quiet room carpeted in white, began with huge, thick sweaters in luxurious "fur cashmere." One of them, particularly apt for the current weather, had a huge oversized neck that one could sink into. One coat had a collar that covered half of the face.

There were jackets of various lengths, some tailored and others extremely loose, with huge lapels. There were poncho-like garments in felt cashmere and turtlenecks of cashmere silk. And there were capes, one in wool, and a lighter, shinier one in silk satin.

In keeping with The Row's minimalist style, almost all the ensembles were in a single color: gray, black or white, with a few items in a rust color. Although the emphasis was on jackets, sweaters and pants, a few delicate dresses added a lighter element.

Note to other designers: The Olsen sisters are being very kind to women's feet. Their models wore men's-style derby shoes, and at least one observer was heard to remark upon leaving, "I want those shoes now!" (Probably to get to the next fashion show, likely miles away.)

Mary-Kate Olsen explained after the show that she and her sister formulated their collection by focusing on shapes. "We worked with rectangles, circles, lines — it was all about the shapes this season," she said. "And the techniques. We used similar fabrics as in the past, but we treated them differently."

The Olsens, childhood TV stars, have serious cred in the fashion world: They are winners of the 2012 Council of Fashion Designers of America award as the top womenswear designers.

— Jocelyn Noveck, http://www.twitter.com/JocelynNoveckAP

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KENNETH COLE, DESIGNER AND SOCIAL MEDIA PROVOCATEUR