NEW YORK -- Snow-covered sidewalks and ice-laden city streets didn't stop the fashionistas from coming out in full force to kick off Fall 2010 Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in New York City.
But it was more than the icy temps that sent chills down our spines -- the early morning news of uber-talented British fashion designer Alexander McQueen's suicide, coupled with the knowledge this would be the last year Fashion Week would be held in the tents at Bryant Park, hung in the air like storm clouds despite the mid-day sun. But, as it's said, the shows must go on. And go on, they did.
The shows: Ports 1961, La Perla, The Heart Truth Red Dress Collection, Mik Cire by Eric Kim.
The scene: Spirits were high in the tents despite the loss of McQueen. But a moment of silence before the Ports 1961 show reminded us all of the tragic news -- and that show-goers are capable of shutting their mouths, even if for just a moment. The crowd at the off-site La Perla presentation, held at a gallery space in the West Village, was flying high on Chambord cocktails while the lacy bra and panty-clad models looked on. The Heart's Truth show was a sea of red. Luckily, I had a glimpse of the ruby hue in my vintage Chanel necklace from lakehillhouse.com.
The celebrities: Whitney Port and Olivia Palermo held court at Ports 1961 ... Maxwell, Jennifer Esposito, Amber Tamblyn, model Maggie Rizer, Rachel Roy and socialite Tinsley Mortimer relaxed with cocktails and checked out the after-dark wears at La Perla ... Robert Verdi and Nigel Barker watched Heidi Klum, Joan Collins, Kim Kardashian, Dara Torres (who chose to carry her sky-high heels and strut barefoot), Kimora Lee, Felicity Huffman (who stopped mid-runway to kiss husband William H. Macy) and more model red dresses created by top designers to support heart disease research. (Insider's Tip: You can own a dress modeled in The Heart Truth show by logging onto to clothesoffourback.org, now through March 5.)
The trend: The economy continues to be reflected in the fall 2010 collections, just as it was for spring 2009. Ports 1961 juxtaposed the two worlds of technology and nature in its collection, which featured a soft and simple color palette of browns, purples, grays and blues. Knit capes, sweater coats and dresses, long leather gloves and matching hats, exposed zippers, chunky ring necklaces and embellished coats all made their way to the runway. La Perla's timeless lingerie harkened back to the days of Bettie Paige with pin-up girl high-waisted briefs and matching satin bras, lacy robes, triangle bras and balconnets. The collection was both wearable and luxurious. The Mik Cire show brought men's fashion to the forefront (and evidently the newest trend in men's grooming: long-haired male models) with a Cold War-meets NYC street seen vibe. A mirage of grays and black hit the runway in distressed leather, wool hats, messenger bags, knee-grazing suspenders, mid-calf-high boots, long peacoats, fingerless gloves and more. It was wartime chic, and was most bleak ... and fabulous.
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