A stylish toast to the year of the rabbit


On Friday night, models, influencers, and charming creatures of every type gathered in the dining room of Congee Dim Sum House on the Bowery, where Sandy Liang, the fashion designer, and Danny Bowien, the chef behind Mission Chinese, hosted an event at the new lunar year. They wore flashes of red, as per Chinese New Year tradition, drank lychee martinis and nodded along to LCD Soundsystem’s “new body rhumba” and the “Macarena”. In honor of the Year of the Rabbit, Ms. Liang sold rabbit-themed jewelry, which ranged in price from $32 to $325, while Mr. Bowien came up with an homage to In-N-Out Burger: vegan kimchi pancake lettuce wraps. A small fire on the street outside briefly interrupted the festivities. Once the smoke and momentary panic cleared from the fire, guests returned to their hobnobbing and content creation. We spoke to them and asked about their expectations for the coming year.

Interviews have been edited.

Danny Bowien, 40

Retired chef

What does a retired chef wear when he’s preparing food?

A Hot Rod Circuit shirt – one of my favorite bands from back in the day. My pants are from Balenciaga and so are my shoes. Congee Village apron.

The shoes are from ‘Who Framed Roger Rabbit’.

It’s called the Hummer. They are comfortable because they are loafers.

How will this year be for you?

I’m going into it with a lot of looseness, so I’m excited to see what happens.

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Ella Emhoff, 23

Knitwear designer, model, artist

Are you bunnyish?

Honestly, yes. I feel like rabbits get the zoomies, and I feel like I’m a person who can stay calm and cute then I get really fast.

Are those star stickers on your face?

I have a pimple. I wish it was a fashion trend. I don’t like putting makeup on my pimple

Do you wear your knitwear?

Yes! I’m wearing a boat neck knit, open knit sweater, tank top knit, Marni floral maxi skirt, and Sandy Liang Mary Janes. I make bunny hats and I was going to wear one, but it didn’t go with the outfit.

Any good resolutions for the new year?

My New Year’s resolution was to get abs.

Sandy Liang, 31

Fashion designer

Are you all rabbity?

I like to eat carrots. And green juice. I think rabbits like green juice.

Take me through your outfit.

I’m wearing a Los Angeles Apparel hoodie. I used to work at an American Apparel in college. Houston and Orchard.

A checkered skirt.

I like gingham. All the time. The skirt is from the new collection. It’s not over yet; I carry the first sample.

And your locket?

It’s not a medallion. It’s a giant marshmallow. This is where I keep my secret powers.

What are your secret powers?

I can not tell you. They are secret. Duh!

Natalie Lim Suarez, 32

Model, editor

Tell me what you’re wearing.

This is a qipao – a traditional Chinese outfit. My mother is Chinese from Malaysia. This is a Malaysian design called Khoon Hooi.

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And what’s on your feet?

These are old YSL shoes.

Do you interact with the rabbit at all?

My sister is a rabbit. We are super close. They are very calm, peaceful, creative.

Maryah Ananda, 24

Chef, model

You’re out of your tweeds.

This is a Ganni set. It is tight at the waist and has diamond dials. Also on the skirt. Super cute.

What’s on your feet?

These are just economical cowboy boots.

Woldy Reyes, 36

Chef, entrepreneur

Your shirt shines. It’s disco.

It’s a New York designer: Eckhaus Latta. It’s gold, for Chinese New Year; I wanted to be festive. It’s festive and fun and impressive.

And it’s tucked into pants.

Another designer from New York: Philip Lim. And then a puffer, because it’s cold outside.

It’s the year of the rabbit. Are you all rabbity?

I eat rabbit food. I am plant based.

Isaac Dunbar, 19


Do you feel anything like the rabbit?

To be honest I feel pretty panda. It’s my inability to survive in the wild.

They are widely known not to be good at that. Fantastic shirt.

I got it at Crossroads. There’s some red in it, for the Lunar New Year.

And these beautiful jeans?

It’s Calvin Klein, runway collection or whatever. And Sketchers platforms.

Tell me about your cute little bag.

I got this at Savers in Plymouth, Massachusetts. It gives early 2000s.

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Paige Cossack, 29

Associate social media director at Real Real,

sticker and jewelry designer

What is this year about for you?

Realizing who I always wanted to be: a maker of things.

What is this jacket?

Vivienne Tam. It has a little fur moment. It’s perfect for a mild winter night like tonight. And underneath I have a slip dress by Marc Jacobs for when it gets too hot.

Is there something special in your heart-shaped locket?

This is my grandmother’s locket, but it’s empty, because how can you define love by just one photo?

Do you interact with the rabbit at all?

Yes. The softness. The Zen. You think of a bunny hopping around, but when you rub it behind the ears, it just sinks down and falls out. That’s me.

Marisa Nakamura, 28

Cook, confectioner, baker

Your outfit makes you look like a cool Jedi.

I took the shirt from the lost property in my laundromat. It was a plain white T-shirt and I cut and sewed it.

Did you also make the skirt?

This is Marithé François Girbaud. I wear pants under the skirt. I am from Chicago. You must dress warmly.

What do you call the ribbons on your socks?

Brushes? I do not know. I wanted to add some flair.

What does the year of the rabbit mean to you?

Be cute at all costs.

The post A Stylish Toast to the Year of the Rabbit appeared first on New York Times.


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