Photography by Mich Cardin
On the second day of New York Fashion Week, designer and Texas native Brandon Maxwell showed his Fall 2020 collection at none other than the iconic American Museum of Natural History. And though an 8 pm ticket may often create hesitance among show-goers, Maxwell's shows consistently draw an eager and excited crowd, and this night was no exception. The electric energy of the room was driven by the historic location, dramatic final silhouettes, and special guests in the form of Netflix's very own Gabi Butler and Lexi Brumback from Cheer, who mat-talked every look and made the show one of the most talked-about events of the weekend. Photographer Mich Cardin captured intimate, artful images for L'Officiel USA during the magical night at the museum. See the images, as well as more about the collection, below.
Although the opening look was show-stopping in itself (left image above), the Project Runway judge showed a total of 63 looks, including both menswear and women's. Two-thirds of the show focused on timeless fall pieces one would expect from a cold-weather collection: think knee-high boots, velvet pieces, and workwear-ready blazers. Maxwell stuck to his styling roots to maximize his personal touch on fall mainstays; wide belts, tortoiseshell accents, and asymmetrically worn beanies completed many of his extremely wearable ensembles. Other standout highlights included dramatic capes, voluminous, floor-length skirts, and classic, soft American denim.
A familiar fall color palette was woven through the women's garments with classic cognac hues, shades of olive, and monochromatic cream looks. The men's clothing skewed a bit darker, with a majority of the pieces in shades of black, navy, and dark denim.
The show caught a second wind towards the end, which featured around 20 eveningwear looks. Maxwell's category-bending dresses undoubtedly left the crowd in awe as models on the runway walked with visible exuberance while having fun with their dresses. One model flared her arms in a playful gesture to show the dramatic silhouette of the dress catching a breeze in her finale look. Others sported completely sheer dresses in olive and chartreuse. Some, like penultimate model Bella Hadid, wore two-piece evening looks, pairing ball skirts with cut-out tops. Ultimately, the designer's ability to deliver fresh takes on classic Americana, while simultaneously being able to keep a crowd enthusiastic at a rather unusual fashion week, is just one of the many reasons why his collections continue to be some of the most anticipated, season after season.