Fashion Week: The View from The Front
April 6, 2006
The spectacle that is New York Fashion Week is studded with more stars than a Swarovski encrusted Sidekick. Paris Hilton and Scarlett Johansson sashay down the runway while Lindsey, Gwen, Carmen, and Kelly (and the stylists who dress them) fill the front rows, shows begin at ungodly hours because Nicky and Bijou arrive â€˜fashionablyâ€™ late, and the photogs are more concerned with getting the US Weekly shot as opposed to capturing the clothing. Itâ€™s one big celeb circus under the big top in Bryant Park.
Design, craftsmanship, and even the models themselves have taken a backseat. Fashion editors still wield tremendous power but gone are the glory days when editors and buyers received the red carpet treatment. Though I did see a lackey delivering a latte to Ms. Wintour as she sat securely in the front, the paradigm has shifted. A showâ€™s success is based as much on celebrity attendance as it is on trend-setting style. Subsequent success is measured in red carpet appearances. Can you blame the designers? Our star struck society craves celebrity. What they wear, we wear. (Or at least a knock-off version.) Itâ€™s good business, right? The designers sell more clothes, the stars get more free stuff, and everyone gets publicity thanks to the tabloid media.
So anti-NYC. Why, in a city where black is always the new black and uptown fashionistas set the fashion standard, are we tripping over ourselves to accommodate Hollywood? Save the paparazzi poses for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in L.A. I want immaculately dressed editors and the head buyer at Barneyâ€™s in the front row. Or other designers like Patricia Field who rocked a sleek black tank, cropped pants, and uber high heels from the front row at Vlassis Holevas. I want to see the reactions of the industry experts, not the plastic smiles of starlets who smile and nod knowingly but havenâ€™t dressed themselves for an event since their first Disney movie premiered. Then Nicky Hilton walked in and I threw all pride aside, for some scrapbook worthy shots. But I was on Planet Fashion, where no one eats solid food in front of each other and plastic surgery is a prerequisite of citizenship.
Nicky Hilton & Bijou Phillips arrive for Zac Posen with Kevin Connoly of ‘Entourage’ fame (and Nicky’s BF of the week) in tow. Photos courtesy of my excellent skills with a digital cam.