Christian Siriano's Masked Models Walked In His Backyard


Nostalgia is the siren of the present day. With many people isolating at home, the lure of memory is understandable. If anyone seems to indulge in a bit of nostalgia, it’s Christian Siriano.


The designer was one of the first in New York to turn his studio into a mask-making facility. The team has manufactured and donated almost a million face coverings so far. At the same time that Siriano was engaged in those good works, he was hunkering down in his new modern home in the coastal town of Westport, Connecticut. He cooked a lot, enjoyed his garden and local farmers markets, dove into his childhood comic collection, and rewatched some of his favorite movies, including “Troop Beverly Hills”, “Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead”, “Clueless”, and “The Wizard of Oz”.


“It was kind of cool to see all those things come back to life,” said Siriano, who filtered his inspirations through his imagination into a collection that translated fairly recent fashion history for a young, fun-loving audience. Poufs, asymmetric hems, bra tops and a jazzy paint-stroke print brought back the 1980s; there were also some references that seemed derivative of more recent couture shows. Siriano attributes the many ’80s and ’90s touches to his film list. “I like that,” he said post-show, “because it reminded me of when I was growing up wanting to be a fashion designer—that’s kind of what inspired everything.”


If Siriano’s idea of glamour is somewhat traditional, he made inclusivity a core value of his brand early on, regularly casting models of different backgrounds, sizes and ages, as he did again today when he presented his spring 2021 show in the backyard of his home. Models in high heels from Sarah Jessica Parker’s line walked over bridges spanning the pool and around the lawn and were watched by an audience, most of whom had been Lyfted in from New York and were seated six feet apart. “I wanted this to be an escape for everybody—fantasy, to have fun with fashion,” the designer said.

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