Wang’s World. With Mallis aforethought.

Friday, November 4, 2016

On Thursday night, November 3, at 92Y, fashion lovers gathered in the center’s auditorium for the latest iteration of Fern Mallis’  icons series. This time, she featured one of the fashion industry’s youngest stars, Alexander Wang (no relation to Vera Wang, as Mallis made clear.)

Despite being one of the biggest names in the industry, and having built his own eponymous label, as well as briefly serving as the creative director of Balenciaga, Wang did not seem the least bit tired. Did I mention he’s known as one of fashion’s biggest party boys?

He was born in San Francisco to Taiwanese parents, and was more traveled at age 18 than some of us are our whole lives. He grew up in San Francisco, his family then moved back to East Asia, and he ended up back in California where he attended boarding school and ended up at the prestigious Drew School where he was friends with Victoria and Vanessa Traina, otherwise known as novelist Danielle Steele’s daughters.

Wang did a summer design program at Central Saint Martin’s, where he said he can’t remember if anyone besides him in his class became famous, and dropped out of Parsons after two more years of fashion school. He started his namesake label with a $10,000 investment from his family.

One of the most shocking moments in his life, he said, was when he was named the creative director of Balenciaga. It was unexpected, and it proved to be less than a dream job. He was traveling to Paris on red eyes once every three weeks, while still trying to build his own line. Wang left Balenciaga after three years. Mallis asked “Did you ever look back when you got off the plane?” Wang dryly responded “No.”

He added “WOOOO! JFK!

Then there was what we all wanted to know, the magic behind the Alexander Wang parties. There is no one in fashion known for throwing a fete better than Alexander Wang. His most recent Fashion Week party took place on Pier 94, with catering by, wait for it, McDonald’s.

Ten years on, where will Wang go next? He revealed he’s obsessed with his skincare routine, so perhaps beauty could be in the works? He hasn’t ruled it out.

After the talk, a select few were invited to a cocktail reception with Wang and Mallis where desserts from Magnolia bakery, including its signature banana pudding, paired quite well with rosé. Like white shoes and Wang designs, rosé works in any season these days.

Photos Courtesy of Michael Priest Photography. 


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