Law Roach, the image architect, rethinks his own image with a New York Fashion Week show

NEW YORK (AP) — Celebrity stylist Law Roach has refilled his cup, emerging out of retirement this week for a New York Fashion Week collaboration with luxury Indian fashion brand Falguni Shane Peacock.

The New York It Girl-meets-Mumbai collection shown Monday blended Falguni Shane Peacock’s opulent craftsmanship of sequin embroidery and delicate flower detailing with Roach’s edgy vision of black baseball caps, hoop earrings and bold golden bangles.

As creative director for the collection, the image architect (a term Roach trademarked) delivered once again. Roach may be into his sixth month of “retirement,” but his stardom shows no signs of slowing down.

He sent shock waves through the fashion industry in March, when he announced in a since-deleted Instagram post that his “cup was empty” and that he was tired of the “politics and lies” of celebrity styling.

Now, he says, he is only taking on work that fills his cup.

“Moving forward I will only do certain things that I really feel like will feed me,” he told The Associated Press. “And this was one of those things.”

Each piece Monday exuded the chic and glamorous style that Roach and his clients like Zendaya have made famous. Roach, one of the few Black stylists in Hollywood, has dressed everyone from Ariana Grande to Celine Dion to Megan Thee Stallion and is often credited with bringing some of the best looks to red carpets.

Roach wore a red pleated skirt with a white button-up shirt and a dupatta over his shoulder as he gleefully strutted in his Air Jordans with the designers at the end of the show, his waist-length straight black hair flowing behind him.

Falguni Peacock said Roach brought a “cool girl” vibe to the collection. After eight years, the husband-and-wife designers returned to New York Fashion Week to showcase their “2.0” collection and, much like Roach, the reinvention of their brand. Sarah Jessica Parker recently wore an eye-catching Falguni Shane Peacock lehenga and choli on an episode of “And Just Like That,” and the duo were co-hosts of a ritzy Diwali gala last year in the city.

At Spring Studios, models catwalked down the runway in looks that could easily be worn off the subway to a gala, from gray sweatpants paired with a shimmery silver beaded blazer or an oversized gray sweatshirt with bubblegum pink feathered skirt or embroidered sheer bottoms.

Roach said he was able to draw on a trip to Mumbai for inspiration for the collection.

“The skills of the artisans in India are unmatched and fashion has borrowed so much from India throughout the decades,” Roach told the AP. “That us collaborating together and bringing it to New York Fashion Week is a way to pay homage to everything that has been borrowed from such a lovely country.”

In the final look of the show, one model wearing sweatpants and a glittering jewel-encrusted breastplate emblazoned with a cross bent down to take off her black heels to walk barefoot — the ultimate cool girl move.

Since announcing his retirement, Roach has not strayed far from his fashion roots. A day after his retirement post, he modeled in a show for Hugo Boss. He continues to work as a stylist with Zendaya, whom he calls family.

But he’s focusing on himself and his mental health.

“What I learned in the months, I learned how to truly love myself and I learned that happiness is a habit, and you have to work on it,” he said.

Roach got his start in fashion by collecting women’s vintage and then opening a store in Chicago where Kanye West would frequent. He went on to make a name for himself as a celebrity stylist taking on several celebrity clients, including Zendaya, whom he transformed from a former Disney star into a style icon. The duo went onto collaborate on the brand Daya by Zendaya and on Tommy Hilfiger’s Tommy x Zendaya collection, where Roach served as creative director. He’s even starred as a judge on HBO Max’s show “Legendary” and as a judge on “America’s Next Top Model.”

At the apex of his styling career, it came as a shock to many when Roach shared that he would be retiring — with news outlets calling it everything from “surprising” to “eyebrow raising.”

But the announcement also came with an outpouring of support. And celebrities turned out for his return to the fashion stage Monday. Entertainer Nick Cannon sat front row with Breana Tiesi from Netflix’s “Selling Sunset” to support Roach.

“He’s unapologetically himself at all times,” he said. “I love the fact that a brother from Chicago would come in and take the fashion game by storm.”

In a neon pink pantsuit with a feather train, TV host and stylist Jeannie Mai Jenkins said the show was one she could not miss.

“The thing I love about Law’s style is he rewrites trends, he takes trends and gives it a whole spin,” she said.

It’s no wonder Roach’s celebrity styling client list was so long. His playful spirit comes out with those he works with. Roach teased Shane Peacock backstage over how he got the idea for dip-dyeing the ends of the model’s hair cerulean blue because of Shane Peacock’s own blue goatee.

When asked for what’s next for the image architect, Roach coyly responded: “I’m going to bed.”

Not wanting to reveal all his cards, he reiterated that he would be sticking by Zendaya’s side but is being intentional about his next moves.

“I never want to leave fashion in its entirety,” he said.