New York Fashion Week: Where Couture and Catwalks Meet Chaos

“You either know fashion or you don’t,” according to Vogue Editor in Chief Anna Wintour. I, alternatively, would like to think fashion and I are neither friends nor foes – more along the lines of acquaintances that run in the same circles…like Facebook friends who may or may not wish each other a happy birthday.

As a fair-weather friend, this year I participated in my BFFSO’s (best friend for special occasions) bi-annual Manhattan milestone – Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week. Pulsating from Lincoln Center, the party kicked off September 5 (with Fashion’s Night Out) and concluded September 13 – with yours truly kicking sandal stilettos off her pulsating pedicured feet.

Fashion’s Night Out (FNO) is like Halloween – lots of walking door-to-door, elaborate costumes and crazy people – except no one eats the candy. Furthermore, when picking a neighborhood (SoHo, Meatpacking, Midtown and so forth) – like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get. The odds of catching a cab on this night of tricks and treats is less likely than a reasonably priced TriBeCa apartment. With that being said, a) it’s best to stick to one geographic area, b) public transportation becomes very en vogue, c) if one does catch a four-wheeled golden chariot – to laminate one’s luck – purchasing a lotto ticket upon destination arrival is especially advised. At the end of the night, instead of a sweets-filled satchel (or haute handbag, for that matter), the sugar swap consists of exchanging images and comparing which on-site celebrity sighting sways supreme (Rev Run DJing at the Piperlime store opening, duh).

Following FNO, between a forecast of full-day fashion shows and a tsunami-style storm outside Saturday, I couldn’t help but wonder: is this an America’s Next Top Model challenge, or something?

Thankfully, a nearby Urban Decay Mudtruck lifted my mood with a much-needed Mochaccino while miraculously matching my makeup. It wasn’t long before I bounced to Birchbox’s pop-up shop to stock up on stylish samples, like Cynthia Rowley band-aids. My feet rejoice.

The week wasn’t just about Fashion, of course. Backstage at the Alice + Olivia show, Stila’s celebrity makeup artist Sara Lucero explained her choice of white and periwinkle eyeliner, and false lashes, to create a timeless, optimistic look that matched the vision of the brand. My mind was exploding with information.

Hopped up on coffee and sugar (thank you Baked by Melissa), as I filed my reports in the wee hours of the morning, I realized how lucky I am to participate in such a fun, exciting – sometimes crazy – event.

The highlight of my week may have been sitting front row, but this bucket list item was soon secondary to seeing Ms. Wintour, The September Issue star herself, at a show.

After sleeping off my exhaustion, catching up on emails and dropping off my dry-cleaning, I’m excited to engage in Manhattan’s other upcoming milestone moments (within and outside of couture culture)…until Fashion Week and I meet again. See you in February…I’ll be the girl in the flats.

Hilary Sheinbaum | Elite.

Robert Anthony