Is the nomad the biggest trend of 2015? Bayarmaa Bayarkhuu is a relative newcomer to the New York Fashion Week scene. The designer launched the brand ten years ago and brought MONGOL from Ulaanbaatar to Lincoln Center.
While Asian manufacturing and Asian designers have long been a major influence over the fashion industry, only in recent seasons have I seen Mongolian fashion as a theme. THEIA referenced Mongolian nomads in their bridal collection; Anna Sui has worked in those influences into their bohemian vibe. Mongolian designer Katya Zol brought dance and a gorgeous collection in Fall 2014.
Is Mongolian Fashion the new trend?
This fashion show opened with a fantastic performance that blended traditional chanting and Dubstep. Who knew the two music genres could work so well together?
Bayarmaa Bayarkhuu referenced many elements of her native country’s costume but re-interpreted them in modern ways, much like Vivienne Tam did with Chinese fashion over twenty years ago.
The designer sourced most of her raw materials in her country.
Long Deel tunics were re-designed in vinyls, metallics or super bright satin. Elements of the traditional garment were also updated as a fitted dress with the sleeves opened in cape-like silhouettes. Sashes were re-interpreted into various obi-like or corset shaped fashion pieces in their own right. Fur, as a staple of Mongolian dressing (it gets cold there!), was used in all sorts of placements as an accent, from cuffs and plackets to luxurious collars with an Old Hollywood look. Knotted trims and contrast borders would be placed in unusual placements or seamed t flatter curves on the body.
I have seen Nomad-inspired beaded hairpieces and silver medallion hair accessories on several runways, but the MONGOL runway had the most elaborate. The same beaded techniques were also used in belts. Mongolian jewelry in cuffs and earrings were also styled with the clothes.
Congratulations to Bayarmaa Bayarkhuu for showing us where Mongolian fashion can take us. Good luck and I hope to see more!