Polish Fashion Week Debuts in NYC

Part of Polish Fashion Week was a fashion show at the New Museum on the Bowery. (Photo by Maria Marchwinski via Nowy Dziennik)

Part of Polish Fashion Week was a fashion show at the New Museum on the Bowery. (Photo by Maria Marchwinski via Nowy Dziennik)

Last week, on the eve of New York Fashion Week, three designers from Poland debuted on the New York fashion scene. Viola Spiechowicz, MIA Manufacture and Paprocki & Brzozowski presented their newest collections on a runway in a prestigious place – New York’s New Museum. The event was part of the first-ever Polish Fashion Week in New York organized by the Polish-American Fashion Foundation (PAFF). For the designers it was a dream come true, for the organizers the best promotion of Polish talent imagined.

“This was our first show in New York. We feel very inspired, as it is one of the major fashion capitals of the world. To have a show here is a dream of every designer,” said Marcin Paprocki.

Paprocki & Brzozowski’s spring-summer 2016 collection, which premiered at the New York show, was inspired by the Renaissance, but with a modern woman in mind. “The Renaissance was rich when it came to shapes and fabric, and that’s what we wanted to show in our collection. That’s why it has lots of jacquard and glitter. But we also wanted it to be modern, so we included short skirts and flowing chiffons that emphasize the models’ shapely legs,” said Mariusz Brzozowski, the other member of the design team.

“Such a group show for Polish designers is a rarity in the fashion world. Nowhere else in the world has it been done yet. Designers are usually on their own when it comes to making their way to runways,” said Viola Spiechowicz, happy to be able to take part in Polish Fashion Week in New York.

The main goal of the show, as well as the mission of PAFF, was to present gifted designers from Poland. “They have a lot to offer and can easily compete with the world-renowned names. It is my hope that Polish Fashion Week will help Poland promote her talents globally and also expand the Polish fashion scene abroad,” said PAFF’s president Alexandra Borowczak.

Judging from the immense interest in the show, the presence of photographers and people from the fashion industry, including buyers representing such significant retailers as Bergdorf Goodman and Barneys, Borowczak’s vision is on the road to success.

“What happened today, in my opinion, exceeded the boldest expectations. It was a fantastic event. The collections were a big hit,” said Sabina Klimek, head consul from the Trade and Investment Section of the Polish Consulate General in New York, whose mission is to promote Polish products on the U.S. market. “Yet again we were able to prove that we have a lot to offer and we should be proud of the quality of our products,” consul Klimek added.

The Trade and Investment Section of the Polish Consulate General in New York, next to Inglot Cosmetics and a number of other companies, was one of the partners in Polish Fashion Week. “All that can be defined as Polish design has a future in New York, a city which welcomes novelty. Fresh and innovative concepts catch attention here and are good sellers,” consul Klimek said.

The Polish designers proved last week that their concepts are unique, with new ideas galore. While the duo Paprocki & Brzozowski presented a sensual, very feminine collection inspired by the Renaissance, Viola Spiechowicz, who draws her inspiration from sculpture, used a unique fabric made out of nettle in her collection. “Now a bit forgotten, it is one of the very first kinds of fabric used by humans. Among others, it was used in cloths for wrapping mummies. It has an interesting structure of linen, but also other distinctive features, like lightness and transparency,” said Ms. Spiechowicz.

Anna and Iwona Margańskie – designers behind MIA Manufacture – draw inspiration from architecture and industrial design. “We have a structural and geometrical approach to making clothes. Regardless of season, that’s what defines our product. However, it is all with the comfort of the woman in mind,” the designers said.

Besides the fashion show at the New Museum, as part of Polish Fashion Week, the collections by Polish designers were last week presented at the PR Gala at the Polish Consulate in New York and at the Chelsea Market studio of Inglot Cosmetics.

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