Call of the (Well-Heeled) Wild


No one tackles an open bar quite like the fashion crew, jimmying for bar space with the same ferocity they attack those Bryant Park port-a-potties, taking their Manolos out on anyone who so much as comes between them and the Bacardi Razz. Everyone follows the call of free booze, so it makes sense that walkthrough presentations that serve cocktails are frequently more enjoyable than whatever is in the tents. The choice is an easy one: nod off at another hour-late tent show with a miniature bottle of water and a bad view; vs. drink free champagne and gawk at model wallpaper in $3,000 suits. After 20 minutes of this, you can still make it home in time for Date My Mom reruns.

Two favorites from this week:

At the Loden Dager cocktail reception/presentation at the Frying Pan, the models were required to stand next to posted descriptions of what they were wearing for the duration of the party. After grabbing a cranberry vodka at the open bar, I stopped to read the writing next to one shaggy brunette model’s head. Jimmy: cable-knit pullover sweater, cashmere; selvedge denim jeans. “Jimmy” was chatting up people in a doorway, drink in hand. It was not unlike pacing through a museum, except the object was alive. It’s schadenfreude at its finest. One model in an olive suit and big white sneakers kept surreptitiously trying to stray from his post, standing a good six feet from the posted description. I see you over there, model. Downstairs, two brave models were shaking their hips in tandem to “Freak-a-Leak” onstage, while everyone gawked. Models drink! Models speak! Models dance! Models dance as goofily as regular people do, actually.

Designer Loris Diran staged one of his last menswear shows at an Audi dealership, but this time he went with the second floor of Nat Sherman, and an open bar courtesy of Dewar’s. Although the La Dolce Vita couture suits and the luxurious matching driving gloves were gorgeous (if not expected), it was the promise of all the free Nat Sherman cigarettes and cigars you could smoke in one sitting—plus Dewar’s sidecars, Dewar’s on the rocks, Dewar’s with 7up, and Dewar’s “neat”—that made this the finest show attended. Biased much?