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Here is an opinion: Fashion shows are not that fun. They are okay sometimes, and an important caveat is they make for pretty decent Snapchat stories that your mom will find deeply fabulous. But among the vast number (read: less than ten, probably) of fashion shows I have attended, much of the experiences have gone something like this: 1) arrive unfashionably early, 2) notice the street style photographers lower their cameras as you walk by and then tell yourself that they just didn’t get your outfit, 3) realize that no, not everyone is sweating, it’s just you, 4) sit in the row that’s mostly made up of women who have brought their tweenage daughters, 5) know literally no one else in the room, and why should you, because you literally have no reason for being there.
But by now even fancy fashion people, at least some of them, are starting to agree with me (just ask anyone who boarded the Yeezy bus). This year more than ever, no one — designers, bloggers, magazines — seems to know what the point of Fashion Week is.
Here is another opinion: The point of Fashion Week is a lingerie brand showing a collection of sexy, uber-topical Halloween costumes nearly two months before Halloween.
Yandy, which is possibly known best for unleashing the Sexy Pizza Rat costume upon the world last fall, staged its very first fashion presentation on Friday night. As the invite included an illustration of what was clearly a sexy Halloween interpretation of Alexander Hamilton, our editor-in-chief correctly deemed it worthy of coverage, and I correctly volunteered to cover it.
Located at the highly glamorous and equally inconvenient Pier 59 Studios in Chelsea, the event looked far more like a regular fashion show than it needed to. One important difference, however, was that backstage at any other fashion presentation, it’s unlikely to hear someone yelling, "Who has the Donald Trump wig?"
What does one wear to a Halloween fashion show? None of us — fashion and non-fashion people alike — could seem to agree. There were floor-length sequin gowns, jeans and tank tops, and crappy Zara dresses (mine), but the one thing we all had in common was that we were there because it’s hilarious.
The great thing about attending a fashion show that is mostly kind of a joke is that they let you invite friends. Two of them, in fact! Neither had ever attended one before, so I had to break the news that unfortunately most don’t come with giant pumpkin-shaped treat-or-treat buckets filled with candy, cat tights, and a sexy lace mask on every seat. But hoo boy, the Yandy Halloween Runway Show did.
A partial list of costumes we saw dance down the runway: sexy moose, sexy Snapchat dog filter, sexy Deadpool, sexy poop emoji, sexy Miss Colombia (too soon???), sexy Fat Jew rosé, "Sexy Political Donkey" and its logical elephantine counterpart, "Donna T. Rumpshaker," and yes, "Sexy Ali Hamilton."
Let's talk about the absurdity of a costume interpretation of meme stealer–turned–fashion "designer" The Fat Jew. Although there was no way the event would miss the opportunity to sexify Clinton, Trump, or Hamilton, even a sexy version of the poop emoji made more sense to include in the show than The Fat Jew. The costume, which includes a stick-straight brown wig modeled after his signature hairdo, a jersey emblazoned with "Rosé Girl" (a non-copyrighted take on his wine brand White Girl Rosé), and a suspicious lack of padding that left the model decidedly non-fat.
The weirdest part of The Fat Jew's inclusion, however, is the fact that it's 2016, and no one is talking about The Fat Jew anymore. It's here that the Yandy Halloween Fashion Show exposes its true absurdity, which is that the most topical Halloween costumes often draw from pop cultural events from late October, over a month away. As unique as the event is to New York Fashion Week, Yandy actually faces the exact same conundrum as the rest of the industry: What's the point of showing clothes that are not meant to be worn until a time when they may be entirely irrelevant?
When I ask CMO Charley Clemens why the Yandy Halloween Fashion Show exists, he explains, "I think this is the next level for us. We’re showcasing that we’re not only sexy Halloween costumes, we’re also fashionable and fun Halloween costumes that can be shown at a serious event."
"We’re here, we’re at Fashion Week," adds VP of Merchandising Pilar Quintana. "A lot of our costumes mimic the ready-to-wear market. We’re following what’s going on on the regular runways with the silhouettes in the Halloween industry."
I’m sure that’s all true. But here is a final thought: Does a fashion show that exclusively features accessible, affordable pieces that don’t take themselves even the least bit seriously need a reason to exist? Perhaps one day we'll be living in a world where Fashion Week also includes things like an autumn athletic sock showcase from Costco's Kirkland Signature label, or a presentation of new reading glasses from that one suspiciously unbranded dollar store. There could be worse things.