There was something interesting going on with Hanne Gaby’s eyes backstage at Derek Lam. When we pulled the model/street-style star (a swarm of photographers, including Tommy Ton and Phil Oh, literally stopped traffic on the West Side Highway to snap her crossing the street after the Alexander Wang show) outside for some quick shots in look #2 from the collection, we noticed a shimmering, gradiated halo of creamy color framing her baby blues. Tom Pecheux had gotten his hands on her.
The eye that Pecheux developed for Derek Lam was delicate, shaded, and devoid of lines (no eyeliner or mascara), in keeping with the fledgling season's predominant makeup mood: an increased emphasis on contouring, shading, and highlighting, and less of a focus on the typical foundation-plus-blush-plus-whatever formula. It consisted of a yet-to-be-released creamy light-mint shadow from Estée Lauder over the lid, a pearly white on the inner and outer corners, and a subtle copper centered on the lower lash line. Where did he get the idea? “I don’t know, the idea just came up like that,” Pecheux laughed. “I spent a couple of days this summer in a house on the Delaware River, and you know, the countryside is so amazing in America,” the Frenchman said, adding, “You have no blinds, no shades, so you wake up with the light. And I don’t know, to be on the river, you have this light... that’s what this eye reminds me of: the sunrise on that river. You know how in the summer the sky is almost like this... virgin pink in the morning? I love it! I’m becoming a romantic. Can you believe it?”
We can. But back to the ethereal eye he created: “The copper under the eye, with the white, I think makes it a little bit spooky. There’s no liner, no mascara, and that’s why it feels a little bit twisted. Derek’s collection is so powerful and it felt so good, that the makeup needed to be really gentle,” And as for being on-trend? “In fashion you always want the contrary of what you’ve done before. Last season, everything everywhere was so dark, so glamorous and glam rock, very intense, a lot of black. This season, I wanted something where you’re not hiding yourself behind makeup, and that’s what I’ve been doing so far at different shows, in different ways. For me, this look is quite minimal.” We reminded him that he'd used at least...four different eye shadows! “It’s a lot of application, but the result, you feel, is almost nothing. On the runway, it’ll look very feminine and delicate.”
Hairstylist Orlando Pita was also of the minimal mindset. “Derek wanted something that wasn’t referenced in the past,” he said, “just a young, cool urban girl who’s not too overdone, whose hair isn’t too perfect. The collection is easy to wear, too, with a lot of inspiration from American sportswear, so I just wanted a woman who didn’t look too fussed-over. I have a feeling that it’s going to be a season of simpler, minimalist hair,” Pita surmised. “You have Raf Simons at Dior, Hedi Slimane at Yves Saint Laurent, Jil Sander’s going back to Jil, Céline is huge. There’s just this move to paring things down, making it more basic, with these great shapes in the clothes, and I think it’s the same thing with the hair. The right shape, this specific hair part, but otherwise, no barrel curl or wave—I’m so happy that we’re moving away from that.” Hear that, ladies? Time to break out the flat iron.
Hanne Gaby photographed by Emily Weiss at St. John's Center in New York on September 9th, 2012.