New York, NY – February 9. 2018: Model display dress by Jill Stuart during Jill Stuart collection presentation during New York Fashion Week at The National Arts Club (Photo: Lev Radin/Gildshire)
This February, designer Jill Stuart did something different for her Fall 2018 collection. While most shows feature models walking designs down a runway, Stuart presented them like living art. With the National Arts Club as the host, models interacted with the guests by playing backgammon, cards, snacking on tea and cookies, or hanging out by the bar drinking champagne. Stuart used the space to tell stories, including one of a model talking to an older boyfriend on the phone, and crying. The deeply-textured, layered look of the clothing combined with the wood-paneled rooms set a very smoky, dark, and rich mood.
The collection centers on female liberation and women’s ability to express themselves with unique styles. Models wore intricate brocade fabrics, velvet hair bows, and trench coats printed with floral designs. The show’s stylist, Victoria Bartlett, asked Stuart to use more color, which is apparent in the clothing. There are lots of jewel tones, shiny leather, and lace blended with sequins. The designs are all very wearable; the mint blouse with velvet pants, corset belt, and brocade bustier is Stuart’s favorite.
Jill Stuart has been a member of the fashion world from an early age. Her parents created the style of women’s tailored trousers and suits using men’s fabrics. Stuart’s mother, Lynn Stuart, also had a high fashion line responsible for outfits worn by Natalie Wood and Lucille Ball. At only 15, Jill sold her first collection of suede hobo bags and silver chokers to Bloomingdale’s. In 1988, she opened her first boutique store, and in 1993, her label launched. Two years later, clothing from her collection could be spotted in the movie Clueless.
In addition to her clothing line, Stuart sells beauty products like lipstick, gloss, rouge, and compacts.