BY TEQUILA MINSKY
What’s Fashion Week without its runway shows?
With a lot of adaptation, neither the pandemic or cold weather put brakes on the annual fashion exhibition sponsored by Flying Solo, the fashion designer shop on West Broadway.
On a spacious outdoor deck, an “L” shape runway paralleled Broadway and Howard Streets seven floors below—here, the site of Flying Solo’s spring clothing exhibition, last Saturday.
Attendees’ temperatures were taken at street level before entrance when they could whiskey up on cocktails on a second floor terrace before braving the brisk 30-degree one-hour outdoor shows, of which there were six.
Boutique owners and buyers received gift bags with masks, socks —Happy Sox, and lip balm and settled on socially distanced plastic cubes.
Bundled up photographers crammed together at the far end of the runway to capture the shows, each featuring 10 clothing designers and a slew of accessory creators.
Against the grey sky, the downtown skyline served as an awesome backdrop with a hovering drone occasionally capturing the scene. Kudos to models, some barely clothed, who never shivered during the very brisk afternoon.
A selection of conceptual, smart, outrageous, naughty, inconceivable, some wildly impractical and others fashionably utilitarian with matching masks graced the runway.
Inventory control manager Jacqueline Lunkes explained that the designer showcase store started five years, first on Mulberry, then to West Broadway. “We give physical space to designers who don’t have a showroom,” says Lunkes, who handled logistics for the Fashion Week event. “Flying Solo is a great space to put a designer on a map.”
The Soho store and web presence offers independent designers exposure, under a three-month contract. Bi-monthly collections in the store change. Cosmetics, jewelry, shoes, and handbags are also part of the store’s DNA. The runway shows featured guest designers along with Flying Solo’s current and alumni designers.
Located in Soho between Spring and Prince, the store’s name logo appears as a foreign language. In fact, they are letters upside down—with added foreign vowels and accents; they spell Flying Solo. A space at 382 West Broadway is Flying Solo’s showroom, closed for the season. And in accordance and observance with the City and State guidelines, 420 West Broadway has been open when possible throughout the pandemic.