Cushnie et Ochs: More Than A Woman
Cushnie et Ochs’ show at MADE Fashion Week could be summed up in one word and three syllables: body-ody-ody. Their clothes are so sexy, perfect for a female billionaire from Miami, or a superspy who likes to crush testicles under her stilettos. The collection screamed, “I am an empowered woman who does SoulCycle three times a day.” We also thought that several of the looks harkened back to the most fabulous celebrities of the late ‘90s slash early 2000s; a yellow dress with fastenings up the side was reminiscent of Elizabeth Hurley’s infamous safety-pinned Versace, and a strapless denim dress was very Puff Daddy-era J. Lo. Several models sported giant hair bows, creating a look that was Jessica Rabbit meets Aaliyah. In the spirit of those two fabulous ladies, Cushnie et Ochs SS16 truly made of us feel like “more than a woman.” We caught up with designers Carly Cushnie and Michelle Ochs to get their take on the collection.
I know you said your previous collections have been for “women of power” — like the last collection I saw you said would dress Cleopatra. Who do you think you’re dressing with this season’s collection?
Cushnie: She’s an uptown gangster.
Like, Harlem uptown?
Ochs: No, like Upper East Side, like she done forget where she came from kinda vibe. She keeps it real.
So many people are like, “Oh, your clothes help me get laid,” or “Your clothes helped me get my husband.” Are you thinking about that now when you’re designing clothes?
Cushnie: You know it’s funny. We do actually do hear that a lot. Even a friend got engaged in one of our pieces. I don’t think we purposefully think that but….
Ochs: We do want women to look good and if that’s what that gets her, more power to her!
What do you think makes a powerful woman?
Cushnie: I think…. confidence and not giving a shit.
Ochs: And being flexible….
Cushnie: What does that mean?
Ochs: Like a woman who can adapt and do it all! I’m not talking about like in the bed too. She knows what she wants!
What do you think we’re seeing in this collection that we haven’t seen before?
Ochs: I think like a real strength. I think people say that we’ve been known for the cut-out, and I think we’ve evolved past that and people can see it’s more elevated and refined. I think that really came through with this collection. And her DNA is still there it’s just pumped up.
Cushnie: And even though she is like this tough girl, she is very feminine also.
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