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Fashion Designers Share Their New York Fashion Week Soundtracks Featuring Cardi B, Migos & More

Cardi B
Aurora Rose/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Cardi B poses backstage at the Christian Siriano show at The Grand Lodge on Feb. 10, 2018 in New York City.

Twice a year, the buzziest names in the entertainment industry converge in Manhattan for the fashion world’s equivalent of the Olympics: Fashion Month, a four-week long fashion spectacle in four of the leading fashion capitals of the world, starting in New York City then making the trek overseas to London, Milan and concluding in Paris.

In between shows during the most recent New York Fashion Week, Billboard caught up with three of the music industry’s favorite fashion designers about the soundtracks and inspirations for their respective Fall-Winter 2018 Ready-To-Wear collections below.

LaQuan Smith

Unapologetically sexy with an edgy New York sensibility, designer LaQuan Smith is steadily establishing himself as an emerging favorite designer of the music set looking for eye-catching pieces. From Rihanna’s green crochet dress she sported in her “Bitch Better Have My Money” visual in 2015 to Beyoncé at the 2017 Sports Illustrated Sportsperson of the Year Awards. While curve-enhancing silhouettes may be his calling card, Smith also designs menswear pieces favored by hip-hop culture shifters, including one of Billboard's 25 Most Powerful People in Music-Fashion: Young Thug. Ahead of Smith’s upcoming 11 AM show on Wednesday (Feb.14), Billboard spoke with Matthew Mazur aka Mazurbate who produced the fashion show soundtrack for the Long Island City-based designer.

“All the songs are super strong in their own way. We open with spoken word by Grace Jones from the iconic movie Boomerang, which is one of LaQuan’s favorites,” Mazur tells us. Sharing that the high-energy set of tracks also includes an instrumental of N.O.R.E.'s "Super Thug," a mash-up of Cardi B's "Bartier Cardi" and Beyonce, Leikeli47's "Money," and a Vogue mix of Vanity 6's notorious "Nasty Girl." “Each song evokes sexuality, strength, impact, and just a general feeling of owning it. I think that's why we all came to the conclusion; the way the song makes you feel when it hits you is unanimously expensive, sexy, and confident.”

Also Seen On: SZA, Cardi B, Machine Gun KellyTinashe and Kim Kardashian West.

Jonathan Simkhai

Remember Camila Cabello’s orangey-red and ultra-feminine lace slip dress from the 2017 BBMAs? Yup, that’s a Jonathan Simkhai original piece straight from his recent Pre-Fall collection. And for his latest sartorial offering, the CFDA-Vogue Fashion Fund winner delivered his modern take on dressing powerful women. He crafted wardrobe full of covetable pieces including a waist-cinching navy and white pinstripe power suit, a tan knitted mutton sleeve sweater paired with a peach belt and tonal thigh-high slit skirt and plenty of intricately beaded lace and satin slip dresses in-between.

“The question that drove me this season was: What does it mean to be a powerful woman today? I wanted to design clothes that would express confidence, conviction, and hope,” he tells us. “You always want the music to set the vibe of the room before the first model walks out. The opening in “Destinations” [by French DJ-producer Gesaffelstein] was the perfect energetic intro.” As models strut down the runway in 36 full looks, attendees, including top models Kate UptonJourdan Dunn and Devon Windsor took in the collection while “Five Minutes” by Her and “Soulwax” by Missing Wires played in the background. “I loved these tracks because they have a strong presence; they’re powerful and modern,” adds Simkahi.

Philipp Plein

?Known for his love of hip-hop music -- FutureTeyana Taylor and Nas have previously performed -- and reputation for putting on over-the-top fashion show productions, designer Philipp Plein transformed Duggal Greenhouse inside the Brooklyn Navy Yard into a wintery, futuristic planet complete with fake snow covered grounds, snowmobiles and Migos.

As the gigantic spaceship landed, Russian model Irina Shayk stepped out in a black long sleeve, skin-tight bodysuit with “I Love You Philipp Plein” emblazoned on the front, and walked hand-in-hand with the Transformers-esque robot while Frank Sinatra’s “Fly Me To The Moon” began to play in the background. After models, including Snoop Dogg's son Cordell Broadus and Diddy's son Christian Combs, hit the runway clad in puffy outerwear, snow pants, bedazzled snow goggles and carrying skis slung over their backs, Migos were welcomed back on stage. The "Stir Fry" rappers, who recently landed their second number one album on the Billboard 200 Chart, wrapped the show with performances of their singles “Motorsport” and “Bad and Boujee,” ahead of the evening's Ibiza-themed afterparty.

Watch the Philipp Plein FW18 NYFW show here.


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