Inside New York Fashion Week, Pt. 1

In his first exclusive behind-the-scenes recap of NYFW for Grit, Cator Sparks chats up Yoko Ono, spies a killer heel by Chadwick Bell, and reviews Laura Siegel, Micah Cohen, Tanya Taylor, and more

Guest Grit by Cator Sparks 


{Cator Sparks is a freelance journalist from Atlanta who has been based in New York City for the past 13 years. He has covered fashion, art, design, and events for The New York TimesVanity FairThe Huffington Post and Keep an eye out for Mr. Sparks as he is planning on spending more time in Charleston soon along with his Scottie, Fergus Dingwall.}


All photos courtesy of Giuliano Correia



Sayonara seersucker! Fall is here, and I am cabbing about town, taking diligent notes and interviewing designers for you, dear reader, so you too can get a sense of what the buzz will be for Spring/Summer 2013. 


Our first stop was young designer Laura Siegel’s ethnic collection. Her desert-inspired looks would work well for the more bohemian gals gliding around Charleston. As stylist Stacey Cunningham explained, “Laura's girl is part downtown cool and part yogi with an avant garde twist; it's my job to work with the designer to throw in some chic while still keeping to her vision.” We love Laura not only for her great designs but for her work with local craftspeople to keep their heritage alive and well.



Next stop was a show for the boys. Micah Cohen is an L.A. based designer and his line, Shades of Grey, offered up a relaxed yet colorful spring collection with tribal prints and graphic tanks we could easily see on Sullivan's or Folly next summer.



On a more celeb-studded tip, we popped by the Swarovski store in Soho, where Yoko Ono was launching her collaboration with the crystal company. Ono told me, “I have been making ‘keys’ since 1966 as a symbol of opening up the skies, the universe, the world to positive energy.” Well done, Yoko! 



Next, we saw Julianne Moore, who said, “I met Yoko at a wedding in Montauk, and I saw her artwork at the Venice biennale and I fell in love with it. So I came to support her tonight.” Always the gracious actress.



To round out the evening, we swung by MoMA for Tanya Taylor’s second season show. Inspired by Natalie Wood on vacation in Barbados,  the collection popped with color and simple, chic tailoring. Keep an eye out for this one. Ms. Wintour sure is.



Chadwick Bell is another one to watch. He already works for a major American design house and his new take on "Ladies who Lunch" looks are captivating the New York social set.



Thursday night we skipped Fashion’s Night Out (although we support it!) to attend the New York premiere of Versailles ’73. Narrated by Charleston fan Cameron Silver, the film is a documentary on the legendary fashion show held in the Palace of Versailles in 1973 that became a battle between French and American designers. We spoke to Mr. Silver at the after-party held in the iconic Tiffany & Co. HQ about how he got involved with the film: “The director asked me to speak as a fashion authority on the subject of Versailles ’73 but she liked the timbre of my voice and changed my role from an interview to a full blown narrator!”


We also spoke to Simone Levitt, the hysterical French socialite who is also interviewed in the film. She wrapped her bejeweled hands around my arm and got cozy over a counter of diamonds to explain her role. “Darling, I didn’t belong in the movie! I was only honest about what I saw because with me, what you see is what you get. I never followed fashion but Hubert de Givenchy is one of my best friends. We talk once a week. You see, he dressed me for 10 years in couture. My poor husband would just sit there at these fittings and say, go on, get another one.”


Now isn’t that the kind of husband we all need?