Mark and EstelMark and Estel could have called their Fall/Winter 2015 collection “50 Shades of Black and Red and Rock ‘n’ Roll”. Instead, they went with the much better thought out “Stairway to the Stars”.

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To understand the collection, you first have to understand their inspiration which is, well, them. Designer Estel Day told me before the show, “our design inspiration comes from our music, that’s why we combine both on the runway.” It goes much farther than just a chance to rock out on the runway. Their looks completely mirror their music: edgy, dramatic, and just a little bit chaotic.

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I have been to every Mark and Estel runway show from the first time they showed in New York, and I’ve mapped their growth as designers from collection to collection. Each season, there is more attention to detail, more complicated design, a little something extra. This season, the duo designed their own fabrics, wools, silks and knits in herringbone, gingham and, especially, tartan prints.

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Designer Mark Tango told me, “everyone asks us who our girl is. This season, our girl is everyone. Everyone can wear this collection.” He’s right. The red and black tartan was just right to give dresses, incredibly well-tailored pants and even a sexy trench a bit of edge, making them modern but not so young that it takes them out of the running for anyone over 25. Don’t worry, there was plenty for the very young fashionista, like a black lace bodysuit and see-through tartan onesie.

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The prints were supported by black and rich reds (and whites, which I won’t harp on about too much. Even Mark and Estel can’t make me feel rebellious enough to accept white after Labor Day.). With everything from flowing tops to leggings, maxi dresses to capes, this collection lived up to its name, and its inspiration. I left the show feeling like I’d climbed Mark and Estel’s stairway to the stars, and emerged a fashion rockstar.

Mark and Estel© Red Stiletto Media 2015

Photography: Anton Brookes | Video and Edit: Scott Fetterman

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