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New York Fashion Week 2024 Was All About Free Nipple Looks

While trends certainly evolve over time, there are certain aspects of fashion week that work like clockwork no matter the season. Every possible location is equipped with a podium: churches, restaurants and even courthouses; The Spring/Summer collections feature the most revealing outfits in the brightest shades; And the fall/winter collections are much more covered, showcasing heavy fabrics and layers upon layers.

But not this season. New York Fashion Week FW24 is underway and although the collections are focused on the colder months, the biggest trend is also the cleanest. Taking a page from the spring/summer playbook, these styles aim to show off skin whatever the temperature.

The trickiest moments on the track

While free-the-nipple looks are nothing new, especially on designer runways, they continue to stifle the industry as a whole. This season, routine enthusiasts like Christian Siriano and Prabal Gurung led the way with the most opulent looks.

As always, Siriano leaned into his affinity for drama and romance. The old Project track The winner embraced sheer fabrics — like chiffon and lace — but constructed them with decadent details (read: a tousled accent made of paper-thin fabrics or fitted lace with intricate patterns).

Gurung, meanwhile, also channels opulence in delicately pleated dresses. The moody floral prints evoked a dark energy that contrasted nicely with the feminine form.

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A model walks the runway during the Prabal Gurung Ready-to-Wear Fall/Winter 2024-2024 show and...
Victor VIRGILE/Gamma-Rapho/Getty Images

Always keen to incorporate sumptuous details, PatBO used intricate beading and flapper-era fringe to enhance her dresses on display. Likewise, Kim Shui sent a model down the catwalk in a nearly invisible dress. Its only form of covering was a handful of embroidered royal blue flowers.

A model wears a black long-sleeve, V-neck dress with sheer panels and a lace spider web at the...
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A model at Kim Shui's fall 2024 show.
Courtesy of Kim Shui

Some brands have also chosen to take traditionally cold-resistant items and transform them into nipple-liberating masterpieces. Eckhaus Latta, for example, played with ribbed knits in a contemporary way.

One model wore a loose mesh top that didn’t even attempt to cover him. Meanwhile, the brand dressed Paloma Elsesser (who previously freed them from the nip) in a floaty knit dress covered in color blocks and stripes.

    A model walks the runway at the Eckhaus Latta show during New York Fashion Week on February 10, 202...
Albert Urso/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
    A model walks the runway at the Eckhaus Latta show during New York Fashion Week on February 10, 202...
Albert Urso/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Meanwhile, LaPointe designers received the “mab Wife” memo, showing a range of fur coats that perfectly fit the trendy aesthetic. Underneath, however, were garments made from very fine textiles.

A model walks the runway at the Lapointe show during New York Fashion Week - February 2024 in February...

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There is, however, one key difference between past seasons and this week’s fall 2024 collections. Previous seasons were much simpler when it came to baring, mostly via sheer materials – taking off your clothes was the radical sartorial act.

This season, however, designers are incorporating the look into their own idiosyncratic visions, not the other way around. Anna Sui, for example, incorporated this style into the vintage shopping theme of her collection, via Victorian-era lace and velvet. Meanwhile, Christian Cowan transformed the 1950s Stepford Wife into a risque dresser with a see-through button.

Model on the Anna Sui RTW Fall 2024 runway as part of New York Ready-to-Wear Fashion Week held in...
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A model walks the runway during the Christian Cowan fashion show during New York Fashion Week: the shows...
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Say what you want about this trend, but it has scope.

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