I have a few moments to sit quietly at home, sipping a cappuccino. Bucky is in my lap; he's been in a deep funk because I have left him at home this time. In February, his lunging at Anna Wintour was not to be tolerated. Bad enough he's already bitten Andre Leon Talley! (Search this blog for the entire story.) I've been musing over the first four days of New York Fashion Week.
Cathy Horyn wrote a brilliant front-page article in The New York Times on Friday, about high fashion falling to earth. As much as your dutiful correspondent adores the shows, one has to ask oneself at this time: is it worth it?
On the one hand, the spectacle, the showmanship, the exquisite workmanship of some of the clothes is simply breathtaking. Some garments have brought tears to my eyes for their sheer beauty. Some outfits have made me wonder what drugs the designer was consuming when he created them.
On the other hand, the voracity of the media is one thing. But observing the same voracity in the eyes of desperate “people of the moment” and want-to-be “people of the moment” is another thing altogether.
For instance, last night, backstage at the Custo Barcelona show I was SQUASHED between Mr. Dalmau, who is tiny, dozens of PYTs and show-crashers. Some of them leaned back on my capacious bosom as if it was an armchair. (One knows they have an exaggerated sense of entitlement, but my breasts are not included, thank you very much.) Somehow one simply could not escape being next to Mr. Dalmau; the crowd simply carried me across the dressing room.
Moi, trapped behind Custo Dalmau (and holding onto a dress rack for dear life)
My face was also pinned by the back of a television camera. When I howled, the swine of a cameraman was completely unapologetic. If it had been Tori Spelling, who was at the Christian Siriano show, he would have been groveling. God knows she probably wouldn’t have even felt it through the Botox and the heavy makeup.
Backstage Tori glued herself to poor Christian’s side until he grabbed his bodyguard and ran out of the room. True story, dahlings.
My dear friend funkoma wrote a blog post on a related topic, “To Be Young, Pretty And Stupid.” http://funkomavintage.blogspot.com/2009/09/oh-to-be-young-pretty-and-stupid.html/
The shining exceptions to this behavior, besides my wonderful on-site assistant Bella Fierce, have been the darling Tim Gunn (who remembered me, causing a girlish blush to rise to my cheeks), the ever-gracious Fern Mallis, Marc Bouwer, Jack Mackenroth, Christopher Straub, and many of the bloggers I have been fortunate to meet this time at the rodeo.
THE UTTER LACK OF FOOD
It should not come as a surprise that, in addition to the paramedics outside the tents with crash carts of Ensure and methamphetamines, there is no food served inside the tents. Free cocktails abound, as does some sponsor's water, Muscle Milk (blech) Coke and Diet Coke, and “mocktails” served up at the Fashion Week juice bar by Belgian restaurant Rouge Tomate, prepared by Rouge Tomate’s mixologist, Rainlove Lampariello. I have no responsibility for the person's name, but let me tell you, the drinks are actually quite delicious. The lemonade with cucumber and mint was an absolute lifesaver before getting back on line for a show. (Your faithful correspondent holds off on the liquor until after the shows are over...one must keep a clear head.)
However, backstage at the Vivienne Tam show, there was an array of goodies. I was so surprised, I photographed them. Then I grabbed a goat cheese sandwich and broke the symmetry of the display.
REMARKS AND RESPONSES
Overheard at the Wednesday night Saks Fifth Avenue celebration: “Saks is a legend," gushed Rachel Zoe. "You come to New York, and this is where you go! It's been around forever, and it's one-stop shopping. Plus, it's Saks! It's Saks Fifth Avenue.”
Stylist Philip Block on clients with bad taste: “I’ll dress them, but they’re not to give me any credit on the red carpet!”
Tim Gunn after the Christian Siriano show: “I feel like a proud papa!”
Half the people one stood next to, usually to a bored, footsore security guard: “Don’t you know who I AM?” Invariable response: nothing. They hear it all day.
Almost any designer save Marc Bouwer when I ask, “Would you ever consider designing for a woman my size?” Invariable response: a frozen stare, and then a few gulps.
That’s all for now. I’m off to prepare myself for my interview with Frazer Harrison, celebrity photographer, so I need to write out a list of rude questions.
Elisa & Bucky the Sulking Wonderdog
All photographs Elisa DeCarlo