It was 8:30 on a Saturday night in the Meatpacking District at 63 Gansevoort, the unequivocally cool lounge/bar, where despite the mounds of melting, dirty snow and wind chill, hundreds of people showed up for the Fall/Winter 2017 Christian Benner presentation. “I hope we get in,” remarked one girl in between drags of her cigarette, while behind her nearly 300 people stood in line eagerly awaiting the doorman to pull them to the front. Leather clad in various degrees of punk attire, the crowd was alive with photographers, social media stars, and Benner fans alike including Earl Slick — David Bowie’s long time guitarist. While the crowd was immensely varied, the one thing that they did have in common was that rock and roll did indeed save everyone’s soul that night.
Dimly lit for optimal brooding effect, 13 models posed for 45 minutes standing atop booths, chairs and tables, in a manner that only added to the overall theme of punk rock rebellion, each wearing a leather jacket from the new ready-to-wear collection. Decadent black shearling, brown suede dip dyed in black oil, and color blocking plays a huge hand in the overall line, which was heavily influenced by Benner’s journey to sobriety — one of the many reasons he attributes rock and roll as “saving his soul.” Captivating in every sense, the Benner presentation was perfectly styled with Hudson jeans, heels made by Lady Gaga’s very own shoe designer, and donning perfectly tousled hair that had a slightly softer, more luxurious vibe than the late ‘70s/early ‘80s punk movement that inspired it.
Of course, as with any NYFW show, it wasn’t without its unforeseen circumstances. Filled to capacity with 150 people, with around 850 eager fans still waiting outside for their chance to see the new collection, Benner brought the show to the snow lined streets, lining up his roster of perfectly disheveled models for those who couldn’t make it inside the venue. Benner promised to make it a night we would never forget, and with13 models taking luxury rock and roll inspired fashion to the cobblestoned streets of Meatpacking, a place that was once known as a cesspool for anarchy, drugs, and prostitution, he definitely succeeded.