New York Fashion Week Fall 2011:
You might say I’m in love with Moncler –especially its high-end collection, Gamme Rouge (I wear one of the jackets all the time). Nevertheless, when I received an invitation to preview the brand’s more accessible line, Grenoble, during New York Fashion Week, of course I planned to attend.
The address for the presentation said 25 Vanderbilt. I’m a New Yorker, and I know my city pretty well–I thought Moncler was showing at the Yale Club, or someplace similar. But as I walked up Vanderbilt, I realized number 25 is actually Grand Central Station. Could it be? How could anyone mount a fashion show in such a busy place, where people are catching trains and racing to use public transportation? Just then, I spotted Angelo Sensini–head of PR for Moncler in Paris–who ushered me inside. He handed me over to a nice young man, Ford Smith, who escorted me to the VIP section.
On the VIP balcony (where I met Penn Badgley and Matthew Settle from Gossip Girl and ran into Waris Ahluwalia and Carlos Souza), I realized this was more than a fashion show–it was a Happening! Champagne was served, the mood started to lift and a sense of anticipation began to build.
Suddenly, the main concourse of Grand Central Station was free of crowds, the music started to swell and 163 dancers–all dressed in pieces from Moncler’s Grenoble collection, of course–took up positions on the floor.
What a show! The playlist was a hoot (from Love Train by the O’Jays to Tightrope by Janelle Monáe), the choreography was incredible and the dancers–wearing ski garb, no less–gave it their all. It was better than halftime at the Super Bowl, and the audience went wild. This was a rare, only-in-New York moment: creative, fun and memorable. I didn’t want it to end!
Obviously, a fashion show doesn’t always have to be about models on a runway–a spectacle like this makes an unforgettable statement. Fabulous!
Photographs by Wai Ng