Oh! The Places You'll Go
NY-designer Cynthia Rowley gives us the lowdown on her Dr. Seuss-inspired NYFW collection, the benefits of a “traveling runway,” and her favorite downtown hotspots.
Cynthia Rowley took her traveling runway—and her surfboards—to the streets of TriBeCa for a Dr. Seuss-inspired NYFW extravaganza. The renowned New York designer, who calls the West Village and Montauk home, recently moved her studio to TriBeCa. Here’s her lowdown on the show and her favorite downtown hotspots.
You certainly made an impact by shutting down TriBeCa’s iconic Staple Street for the show…
Cynthia Rowley: We love the idea of a traveling runway. We’ve shown in China and Australia in the past, so who better to do a runaway runway with than Dr. Seuss. We reinforced the theme with a 200-foot long printed runway created with Ruggable.
How did Dr. Seuss inspire the collection?
CR: I was inspired by the sentiment found within Oh! The Places You’ll Go and that sense of wanderlust and adventure. Hints of Seuss came through in the striped raffia hats, scalloped leather bags, and two-tone shoes, which we paired with pumped up pastels and sleek two-tone pieces. The collection felt fresh, joyful and relaxed with lots of layered texture and slouchy sportswear mixed in with pretty, breezy dresses.
Is travel a constant source of inspiration?
CR: The most inspiring thing about traveling is navigating unknown territory and just taking it all in. We always take a short family trip over the holidays to a dream destination. Most recently, we went to Senegal and Egypt. Both were so inspiring—the food, the music, the people. It helps to have a local on the ground ahead of you to show you the secret spots.
How has the move been from West Village to TriBeCa?
CR: I love it. Our studio is on the ground level across from the Staple Street Skybridge where we showed and has floor-to-ceiling windows. It’s great people-watching; there’s non-stop photoshoots. It’s a shoppable showroom so people can view the new collection and enjoy instant gratification.
What’s new in the whimsical world of Cynthia Rowley?
CR: Lots of new products, collaborations, and events. We just released roller skates with Impala and launched our new shoe collection. I’m also super excited about taking our traveling runway on the road, the first stop is Los Angeles where we will show the Spring 2020 collection.
Name your downtown favorites?
CR: Well, the most iconic and Instagramable destination in TriBeCa: the Staple Street Skybridge. After a long day, the OG spot is The Odeon. All day long the team pops in and out of Laughing Man for coffee. Ethan Rose is a tiny little hair salon with the best cuts and color in TriBeCa, and they even have their own brand of rosé! For a fun workout, try Dria Murphy’s The Ness in SoHo. And Morandi is my home away from home in the village.
WORDS Natasha Silva-Jelly
PHOTOGRAPHY BFA, Darian DiCianno