ANNE LOWE: Premier designer to celebrities and socialites in the 20th century. PHOTO COURTESY OF RHSTORIES.COM

Fall has unofficially arrived. Labor Day has passed. For those who are a little old school in their fashion habitat, this week the color white will be retired for the next couple of seasons. Winter white, beautiful vanilla creams, and tans will be ushered to the front row of the closet.

Speaking of fall, this week kicks off the start of the 2024 Spring Summer Fashion Week runway shows. New York Fashion Week (NYFW) opening ceremony begins today; the official runway lights up on Sept. 8 and ends on Wednesday, Sept. 13.

NYFW is followed by London Fashion Week, Sept. 15-19; Milan Fashion Week, Sept. 19-25; Paris Fashion Week, Sept. 25 – Oct. 3; and Los Angeles Fashion Week, October 19-23, 2023.

On the roster of runway shows to attend are 11 African American, African, and Caribbean designers who will be front and center under the tent this season. Sukeina and Theophilio will do digital runway show releases on Sept. 9 and Sept. 12 respectively; Bed On Water and Agbobly are by appointment only.

Sergio Hudson and Laquan Smith will be the ones to watch this season. Hudson is having a power moment due to his muse, Keke Palmer. Who can forget that beautiful white beaded strapless gown that Palmer wore to the Met Gala in May with Sergio Hudson by her side? Hudson was responsible for Palmer’s entire look that night, from the gown to hair and makeup.

The pair made the cover of Essence magazine’s “Fashion Issue,” out this month, and teamed up as presenters at the annual Fragrance Foundation Awards in June. It was later announced that Hudson would be an official member of Palmer’s team as creative director.

Frederick Anderson is celebrating his fifth year as a designer and his FallWinter 2023 runway collection titled simply “Renaissance” turned quite a few heads in February. Highlights from his runway show included the purple ruffled jacquard dress with the draped sleeves and the off-shoulder black crochet dress with the intricately delicate crochet shell stitch at the hem of the dress that draped like lace.

During his Resort 2024 runway show in May, another crochet design featuring a cream cape with crochet puffs and a matching crochet mini skirt with more crochet puffs was an outstanding display of artistry that had crochet designers salivating. Anderson is definitely one to watch this week.

There is no doubt that the 2024 Spring-Summer Fashion Week collections are going to be an exciting moment for designers of color. It is thrilling to see more Black designers showcased in the tents this year and receiving prime time slots on the schedule. Looks like fall is coming in strong with a lot of promise.

The Winterthur Museum, Garden, and Library in New Castle, Delaware is showcasing the “Anne Lowe: American Courtier” exhibit starting Sept. 9.

Lowe was the premier designer to celebrities and socialites in the 20th century, the designer behind the iconic wedding gown of Jacqueline Kennedy. Lowe was snubbed by the fashion industry and only noted as a dressmaker or seamstress because of her race.

But Lowe was a significant contributor to American fashion and a Black American historical figure in the world of fashion. The exhibit runs through Jan. 7, 2024.