There's an obvious allure to sitting front row at a fashion show.
Besides the practicality of being able to see each look from head to toe and make a quick escape as soon as the last exit walks off the runway, it does a fragile fashion ego good to know that you've scored one of the primo catwalk side seats.
But the truth is, the real fashion show fun is backstage and that's where I found myself last Thursday night during GenArt's Fresh Faces in Fashion event in New York City. As I mentioned, my boyfriend, menswear designer Philip Sparks, was chosen to be one of eight designers to show during the annual emerging talent event. And as I also mentioned, my review of the collection is glowing and proud.
The new (and old) 90210's Shannen Doherty did hosting duties (yes she was short and, unfortunately no, she didn't box some poor dresser in the face for looking at her funny) and top international editors and buyers filled the Manhattan Center's ballroom with well manicured fingers crossed, hoping a new style star was about to be born.
I will, of course, award top spot to Mr. Sparks but I also loved Ideeen New York with its gauzy tanks and silk harem pants and Heutchy oxfords which hit the svelte soled, classic mark still dominating men's footwear trends into next spring.
The Fresh Faces show is similar in spirit to the Toronto Fashion Incubator's New Labels show but what I loved about GenArt was that there was no winner or a judging panel involved in the design process as there is during the months long run up to the TFI event. Each designer hit the rooftop after-party feeling like the audience got a clear peek at their sense of style and motivated to take the next big step in building their brand.