Fashion Week Diary: Chris Benz's Chic Ladies, Zero + Maria Cornejo's Fluidity, and Instant Coffee

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Photos: Imaxtree

Looks from the Zero +  Maria Cornejo, Rebecca Minkoff, and Chris Benz Spring 2012 runways 

Fashion Week Diary, Day…5?

I’ve officially lost track of the day. I think it’s Monday but who knows anymore. In short, we’ve crossed the mid-way point. Which means I’m down to instant coffee in my apartment—the leftover rations from Hurricane Irene. My laundry needs to be done and let’s not talk about my hair. The day calls for great accessories to get me through. (Today: a Gareth Pugh ring, Reed Krakoff bag, my red booties again, and a blue skirt! Color!)

My first show of the day was Preen. I love Preen. Their body-con looks make me wish I had the figure of a young boy (it’s good to have aspirations, no?). But those looks are long gone, it seems. The spring show (inspired by Virginia Woolf) was an evolution from fall, with look upon ladylike look walking out, and nary a cut-out or super form-fitting dress in sight. Perhaps we’re all growing up and wanting to cover up? The colors were so bright it was almost dazzling in the morning sun. And though Preen's detailing was exquisite as always, I couldn't help but feel something was missing.

There wasn't much time to ponder that as I had to run off to Rebecca Minkoff next. The crowd was a younger set, all of whom loved seeing the Man Repeller walk the catwalk. My only pet peeve? If you don't know how to behave at a show, ladies, figure it out. No stomping on handbags, sitting on other people, or crushing of feet in your rush to steal a chair from the front row. But back to Rebecca. The clothes were inspired by the desert and had a very louche ’70s vibe to them. The sort of clothes you’d wear while in the desert doing things I probably can't talk about here. (But you know, message me.) The real stars, naturally, were the bags, and those were what I was drawn to. I can't wait for the next season to land in stores.

Next up was Chris Benz. I really love watching a designer evolve over the years. Chris’ spring collection was just fantastic. It was sophisticated but still fun, the prints were chic, and the loose cuts were, of course, my favorites. And I’m not saying all this just because he had a bar. (Seriously, designers, the bar really helps.) This one definitely goes on my list of my favorite collections of the season.

After Chris, I went to a show that blew my mind for many a reason. I love Zero + Maria Cornejo. Perhaps too much. My coworkers are sick of me babbling incoherently about her clothes. Naturally I had to see her spring line. The show was about summer in New York, and toughening up fabrics, adding structure. Where Cornejo excels is with her use of prints and fabrics. She understands better than most the flow of a material over the body. So when you see a billowing, draped dress, it’s not just loose material. Rather, the dress helps define the figure while not showing much skin. Her spring collection had beautiful prints made from photos taken at the Musée du quai Branly in Paris. If there is one collection I'm absolutely shopping from, it's ZMC. I seriously can't say enough about it (clearly).

My night ended with the Marc by Marc Jacobs show at the Armory, where it appears, someone forgot to turn on the air conditioners. Fortunately, the show started right on time. And it was a fun, colorful take on going back to school. How I wish Marc by Marc was around when I was younger. (For more on Marc by Marc Jacobs, read the review.)

For more Fashion Week fun, read what happened yesterday!