BN Goes Backstage for Ruffian’s Autumn/Winter Collection at New York Fashion Week

At 8am on Saturday morning, backstage NYFW, preparations for Ruffian’s fall show were in full swing. At mirrored stations around the room, makeup artists and hairdressers swarmed around the porcelain-skinned, ethereal creatures seated on high chairs before announcing that their creation was complete. A cloud of finishing hairspray was swiftly followed by a congratulatory burst of flashes from the loitering photographers. With 30 minutes to go before show time the pressure in the room went up an octave and the conversations moved from enthusing about the inspiration for the look to one fashionably dishevelled man, barking seemingly to no one  “Get all these people who aren’t needed here out”. Not one to miss a subtle cue I decided to leave them to it and made my way to the hallway where a photographer was challenged with the whack a mole task of taking a photograph of each model as they went from makeup into the dressing area.

Running 10 minutes fashionably late, the models lined up like thoroughbred racehorses while the team made final grooming and the creative directors gave their final seal of approval. A twenty-something with a clip board and headset poked her head through the curtain announcing “Ok guys we are ready!!!” which didn’t go down too well with the Brian Wolk who stormed through the curtain toward her shouting “We are ready when I say we are ready!” Awkward!

The music boomed, announcing the start of the show; backstage took a united deep breath before they shared their Fall 2014 vision with the elite of the fashion world and, judging by the raucous applause that followed, they nailed it.

Photo courtesy

Clothes by Ruffian

The Ruffian Fall 2014 collection saw the juxtaposition of medieval piety with 80s ultra feminine power dressing. Large ruffles, billowing blouses and unicorn prints combined with capped sleeve dresses and tailored suits, using rich fabrics, tweeds and sequins. The color scheme incorporated rose-gold and silver inspired by old Flemish paintings, and all this combined to create a collection, which Morais, one half of the fashion house’s design duo, described backstage as “Monastic Opulence”

View the full show here!

Hair by TIGI

“Effortlessly glamorous” – Glam Rock meets medieval flamboyance; this is the look we should all be asking our stylist for this fall. Think Princess Stephanie of Monaco circa 1980s. When that direction comes down the runway in the form of a collaboration between Ruffian, winners of the Fashion Group International Rising Stars award, and Global Creative Director Nick Irwin at Catwalk By Tigi, fashion subjects take note.

Face by MAC Cosmetics

A throwback to the glamor of the opulent Upper East Side in the 1980s was the look created by MAC Cosmetics, lead makeup artist James Kaliardos, resulting in both strong eyes and lips.

Photo courtesy

Get the Ruffian beauty look

The Proper Blow Out:

Mist dry hair with water and sectioning hair spray roots generously with root boost spray. Using a round brush, blow dry hair straight with a slight bend at the ends, lifting air at the root and blowing back at the crown.

Divide hair vertically into four sections and spray each section with hairspray. Using a 2-inch barrel curling iron, curl hair horizontally to the nape of the neck and spray again before unclamping and removing the iron from the hair without unravelling. Set curl with a duckbill clip and spray with hairspray.

After hair has cooled, remove clips and brush smooth with a flat brush. Lightly tease roots at the crown with a fine tooth comb and brush back using a flat brush.

Using your fingers, scrunch hair from the bottom to break up the length for a natural movement. Finish with even more hairspray…Obviously!

Products Used:
CATWALK  by  TIGI  Your Highness Root Boost Spray

CATWALK  by  TIGI Session Series Work It Hairspray

The Ruffian style guide:

Update a little black number with primary colour red or blue tights
Create pious femininity with high embroidered necklines with billowing sleeves
Pair draw string pants with sequined shirts
Look for dresses with capped sleeves, a structured body and floating skirt or skirts with large panelled horizontal waist bands and a vertical pleat or two for movement

Make Up : The bold & the beautiful

Eager to try the look on the streets, after the show I hot footed it to the MAC Cosmetics on Columbus Avenue where Lyndsey recreated it for me.

First The Eyes… The doe eyed smudge look

Apply MAC Cosmetics Dusk CCB to the lid and crease and blend, then add a Brun Shadow to the crease and underneath the eye. Apply both using the same 217 brush with a rock and roll motion sweeping away from the eye first.

Fingertip dab Electric Cool Pure Flash in the inner corner of the eye and stony eyeshadow over the lids to create a dewy finish.

Add a final dramatic flourish with Evil Twin Technakohl liner to define the top lash line and Haute and Naughty Mascara
Prep The Skin… Porcelain skin

To create the porcelain base for this look prep the skin with moisture infusion serum and strobe cream

Beauty experts swear by concealer pallets at fashion shows to create flawless skin, use the combination of color corrector and concealer to hide any imperfections.

To create a chiselled cheek bone without living on celery run a terra-cotta blush under the cheek bone starting from the top and sweeping down.

Lips… Go Bold & Burgundy

Frame your lips with a burgundy lip pencil and fill it in with the Crushed Cranberry Lip Pencil.

The real world verdict
Dramatic was an understatement and a definite departure from my usual “natural”/ bare faced look. Bold lips and eyes were perhaps a bit much for 11am on a Saturday and I gave my husband a fright when I walked in. In fact he asked “Did you die on the way home?” but I guess he just doesn’t understand fashion!

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