It's Alexa, bitch. As yet another fashion week fell upon us, I couldn't help but feel slightly nauseated by the unorganized front-of-houses, jaded editors, bitchy buyers, and seat-stealing stragglers galore in the form of wannabe-fashionistas, hipsters, and fashion students. "Why bother?" you ask. Well, the boys at Slant held a pair of my red patent leather Louboutins hostage. It wasn't so much the shoes I wanted, but the, um, Tic Tacs I had stuffed in the shoebox. Read on to see how I tackled things with alarming sobriety…I mean bad breath.
It wasn't enough that I didn't have…mints, but I had to wake up to the news that NYC cabs, a.k.a. my only mode of transportation, were on strike against the mandatory installation of GPS devices. Now I had to rely on the dirty-ass subway to get around. Can I just say that nobody quite understands how confusing Manhattan's underground is? On second thought, I guess some people do because the train was really crowded. I stopped by the New York Public Library to take in my first show of the Spring 2008 season. The husband and wife team of Y&Kei presented a whittled down collection of about 15 "urban hippie" looks lined in a circle surrounding a high wooden ladder formation centerpiece. That was only a pit stop on my way to the L.A.M.B. show. I was as giddy as a Harajuku girl making her way to…well, a Gwen Stefani fashion show. The playful mod creations conjured up by our favorite platinum pop star were cute but not nearly as cute as Gavin Rossdale and Kingston James. Seated next to hubby and baby in the first row was Diddy, who apparently has, thank God, given up putting on his own fashion debacles. I watched in horror as Kingston reached for Diddy's glasses. I continued to watch in horror as said Diddy then grabbed the one-year-old's hand and kissed it.
I missed the Miss Sixty show. (It was at 10 a.m. What do you want from me?) My spy (who we'll call "Patty the Intern") tells me that Demi Moore and Hilary Swank will be seeing flashbulbs for days due to the throngs of shutterbugs. Mischa Barton, Maggie Gyllenhaal, and Clive Owen were also on hand. And apparently nobody informed the designers of the death of the skinny jean. And may I ask just how much lower low-sung denim can go? Whitney said it best: Crack is whack. The yellow fuckers were still supposedly striking but I managed to coerce a cabbie to take me to the tents without enforcing the silly $10 per zone fare system. At the Promenade tent, I took my seat for Gottex's swimwear sextravaganza. Forgetting about the show, which started off with solid Bond-inspired looks, I instead focused on catching Nigel Barker's attention. It didn't work but I managed to get a nod from Matthew Knowles. Sources tell me that Daddykins is seeking a House of Diarrhea licensing deal. A massive amount of alcohol later, I chatted with some British jewelry designer who commented on how dirty New York is. I told her that Gotham is no dirtier than Amy Winehouse's ballerina slippers and the shoddy ragamuffin shot me a horror-stricken look, told me to "sod off," and stormed away. Next up at the Salon tent was Japanese designer Akiko Ogawa. Bored with her attempt at futuristic, I resumed making googly eyes at Nigel Barker. Post-Ogawa, I made a mad dash to the port-o-potties. Alas, I was denied by tent security. "They're closed," said the rent-a-cop. "Tell that to my vagina," I said. A Conde Nasty gal pal came to my rescue allowing me to handle my business in the 14th floor facilities. After I relieved myself I came to a realization: "I'm drunk. I'm drunk at Men's Vogue." Hiccup.
I don't care if you're tired of hearing my constant rants regarding the presence of children in the tents but Ports 1961 and Vera Wang were kid central. Unless you're Kingston James McGregor Rossdale—which, let's face it, you're probably not—then, to quote Donatella Versace by way of Maya Rudolph, GET OUT! At the Roseland Ballroom, I, along with (in order of importance) Mary J. Blige, Nick Cannon, young designer Esteban Cortazar, Mya, Ivana Trump, and Star Jones, bared witness to the hot mess that was Baby Phat. I'm not quite sure who organized the seating arrangements but in my book at least, placing ex-beau Russell Simmons next to Kimora's current boyfriend Djimon Hounsou is a big no-no. I guess one can't expect a Baby Phat show to account for taste, much less tact. Later, at the CK Underwear party hosted by Hounsou and two-trick pony Hilary Swank, everyone was damn near clad in white. Hotties scantily dressed in briefs served s'mores and cupcakes. Nothing gets between me and my Calvin's…well, except the socks they stuffed inside the fellas' undies.
Exhausted from the previous evening's undie affair, I employed the help of Patty the Intern. At the Chelsea Art Museum, Patty furiously texted me asinine questions like "OMG! R u here?" and "Ms. Jackson, if ur nasty, is right in front of me! Can u c her?" Good grief. I wanted to punch the bitch through my phone, but alas, Verizon hasn't perfected the technology yet. Anyway, turns out Janet Jackson paid a visit to Catherine Malandrino, as did a near-bald Mena Suvari. Patty said Madame M doled out orgasmic bonbons of femininity with avant-garde touches (not exactly in those words). Over on West 22nd Street, she nearly collided with Samuel L. Jackson on her way to Y-3. While it was sunny outside, inside the weather forecast called for rain as male and female models marched about on a drenched blacktop. Yohji Yamamoto's high-end, Adidas-backed sports collection was an athletic urbanite's wet dream. "I think Vincent Gallo, Veronica Webb + LL Cool J r here 2," Patty texted poorly. "Don't u just heart what Webb's wearing?!?"
I skipped Day Five to help hold Patty's hair back while she vomited the seven watermelon martinis she sucked down the night before (she claims she got some good gossip but can't remember a thing). Lisa Marie Presley made her way to her seat last minute as "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy" blared in the big tent at Anna Sui. Cheery, lively stunners in Sui's '70s, deco print creations (pictured) offered a refreshing break from the drone-like monotony of fashion week thus far.
I was supposed to go to Carmen Marc Valvo. But, then again, so was Vanessa Williams. She didn't turn up, and neither did I. Beefcake Patty told me that Deborah Cox was there, to which I replied, "Bitch, DC is not VW."
Officially the last show of the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week lineup, eveningwear designer Tadashi Shoji was veritable icing on the cake. While some of his looks bordered on costume-y, there were a few elegant numbers. Nary a starlet or child in sight, the show started on time and ended with a bang by way of striking Estonian model Tiiu Kuik. Now that, ladies and gents, is what fashion shows should be all about.
Overall, the voluminous balloon-like proportions of seasons past have deflated, giving way to a more shape-conscious silhouette. The dress continues to reign supreme as do prints and vibrant colors. And if you're Marc Jacobs, backwards is the new black (MJ, whose show went on a whole two hours late, reportedly thought it would be cute to flip the script and stage his exhibition in reverse order—designer bow first, model finale walk second, and individual model file last). Don't be surprised if you hear "How very Kris Kross-chic of you" next spring.
This blog entry was originally published on Slant Magazine on the date above.