Fall 2007: Charles Nolan
My very last show of Fashion Week was Charles Nolan and, as I was standing in line to get in, it was clear that this wasn't going to be any ordinary show. A credenialed redhead came into the standing-room line and started asking us where we were all from. There were several fashion students, so she said, "Hi, I'm Charles' sister" and plucked about eight of them from the line to go inside early, which I thought was very cool and, in the hierarchy that is the fashion industry, rather refreshing. And, in fact, the entire show was a family affair; amidst all the models, male and female, members of Nolan's family--children included--walked the runway. It was a bit cheesy, yes, but it helped to reinforce the "lifestyle" of the brand, as well as the fact that it can be worn by so-called "real people."

The funny part is that the audience actually applauded for the "real people," such as this woman, who I think might be one of Nolan's investors.

I saw jaws unhinged in the front row when this woman came down the runway; I think everyone was shocked by the presence of breasts. The photographers definitely enjoyed them though.

But lest you think the show was all "real people," there were indeed models, and the collection itself was classic American sportswear in the tradition of Bill Blass and Anne Klein. This was one of my favorite looks.

I loved this mod orange-red dress too, although I wouldn't recommend wearing it with purple tights.

There were some great cocoon coats as well, such as this red one--I love the scarf-like tie collar.

And did I mention there were male models in the show too? After seeing women, women, and more women, let me tell you, I was quite glad to see some men. And since the collection was inspired by England, they all looked very prep school. Tasty.

The last seven looks were obviously for evening, and this was one of my favorites--I don't think I've seen a more sparkly dress in my life. (Mini pailettes are what did the trick.)

So, thanks to Charles Nolan to ending my Fashion Week with a refreshing, cheerful, irony-free bang (and a gift bag that included a super-fun huge cocktail ring). It was a blast!

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