From a glance through the window of Ideal Glass Studios, it was evident that Private Policy’s production budget had significantly increased since last season. The space was transformed with tons of fresh hay while the entrance of the runway was made into a green light tunnel that resembled the Prada set from fall 2022. Part of the credit can go to star publicist Kelly Cutrone, who’s been an avid believer in the brand since she started repping it three seasons ago; she even proclaimed at the start of the proceedings that this would be “one of the best shows” we would see from the designers Siying Qu and Haoran Li. But most important was the tenacity of Qu and Li, with a bit of help from stylist Patti Wilson, who’s been helping to push the brand out of its usual comfort zone of party-ready clothing. Qu and Li even spent the past year working with the CFDA and Genesis House to expand their design boundaries while also learning more about Asian cultures and modern technology. They visited South Korea, one of the leading nations in AI technology, and explored tools like 3D printers to create new ways of making clothes.
While the previous few seasons of Private Policy featured themes of nature, this one marked a new chapter, focused on technology. “We’re really at the beginning of this massive technology revolution,” said Qu. “It’s like the Wild West: it’s exciting but at the same time so dangerous and unknown.” With that, the designers asked AI the question, “If there was a gold rush today, what would you wear?” The answer that ChatGPT provided was up for interpretation, but some key elements that it provided included large-brimmed hats and long sleeves which the designers merged with their interpretation of gold rush dressing. To Qu and Li, this meant twill utility shirts trimmed with leather collars, capri pants that hit right at the top of a cowboy boot, and utilitarian jackets decked out in sequins and metal hardware. If a few seasons ago we mentioned that Private Policy’s clothes were not really created for flash photography, this season every look photographed well under the fluorescent lighting that lit the runway. (The proof is in the runway photos below.) As the show ended, longtime fans of Private Policy did indeed acknowledge that it was the label’s best collection to date.