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Fall 2008

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Ali Stephens Is Thursday’s Top Model

Thursday’s catwalks were full of unexpected moments. Karen Elson took a tumble closing Zac Posen and Diddy helped her up. Aussie Abbey Lee flashed her nipple piercing beneath a sheer top at an otherwise demure Calvin Klein show. Former cross-country runner Ali Stephens opened Klein for an impressive debut on Stateside runways. She’s our top girl to watch this week and takes Thursday herself. —Kendall Herbst

The Image Guru's Black Mood

Montgomery Frazier is an image guru, which he says means he’s a publicist, marketer, and stylist all in one. These days he’s working with Julie Brown (née Downtown) on a new TV show. So what does Frazier like at Fashion Week?

PETA Invades Donna Karan's Apartment; More Black Models on the Runway

• PETA says it managed to get an operative into Donna Karan's home yesterday. The young woman tricked her way past Karan's assistant by using a fashionable outfit and a tray of soy lattes. When Karan showed up, the infiltrator put on a DVD of animals being harvested for their pelts. [NYP] • Runway model vet Karen Elson fell down as she closed Zac Posen's show, and Sean "Diddy" Combs and Caroline Trentini helped her up. [The Cut]

Fashion Week Show-Hopping Wears on Anna and Suzy

For all of Fashion Week's pretty clothes, we're exhausted, and our under-eye circles are kinda ugly. But at least we're not the only ones feeling a bit worn out. "You're running all over town, and nobody's thinking through how much time you spend in a taxi or car," said Vogue queen bee Anna Wintour at Thursday's 3.1 phillip lim show.

We're Forced to Get on Our Knees at Hilfiger

Because it took us 45 minutes to get to Lincoln Center in rush-hour traffic, we might have been a little late for Tommy Hilfiger. And because we might have been a little late for Tommy Hilfiger, we might have missed the chance to sit in our actual assigned seats. This may be how we ended up loitering in a glass-enclosed balcony, fighting for a spot past the folks in standing room who'd gotten there at a reasonable hour. And that's how we found ourselves at our lowest Fashion Week point, both emotionally and physically: kneeling on the carpet, peering through people's legs down at the front row below.

Plimpton's Cute, Posey's Ragged, and Price's Scared

It's not often that we completely geek out for a celebrity, but when it happens, it's generally only because we bump into someone from an Aaron Spelling drama and become embarrassingly unable to contain ourselves (like when we saw Nat From the Peach Pit at our grocery store and called out to him in the parking lot, which is practically against the law in California). Tragically, after a bottle of complimentary Prosecco at Cynthia Rowley's show on Thursday, one such moment occurred in which our cool vanished like the Great Wall of China under David Copperfield's mischievous hand.

Model Falls! And Diddy Helps a Damsel in Distress

We almost made it through Fashion Week without a model fall. The surprise, when one finally came at Zac Posen, was that it wasn't a newbie who took the plunge, but runway vet Karen Elson — as she was closing the show, no less. Brazilian bombshell Caroline Trentini helped her up, with help from Sean John (as Diddy/Puffy/Sean Combs is now calling himself) who chivalrously stepped onto the runway to extend a hand. Maybe he's a gentleman after all. Elson later came out smiling with Posen for his bow. —Kendall Herbst

Subdued, Modest Chic at Calvin Klein

Francisco Costa, the designer at Calvin Klein, takes his mandate as New York's minimalist-in-chief quite seriously. His commitment to the line is admirable: Each of the looks in today's collection could've been cut with laser. The palette was navy, black, and gray; any bits of flash were subdued, in some cases beneath a layer of sheer cashmere.

Ali Larter: Half a Shirt Short, and Moody to Boot

Lindsay Lohan was rumored to appear at the Calvin Klein show on Thursday, but we saw neither hide nor hair of the leggings-loving former redhead. Tragic, yet not surprising: LiLo seems like the sort to ditch. We also wondered if we'd see Kate Bosworth, since she's appearing on CK billboards all over town.

Breaking: No Celebs at Posen? Seriously?

That's the word in the tents right now, anyhow. Apparently he wants to lose the flash factor and have tonight be about the clothes. Now that's just crazy talk. The show's supposed to start at 8 p.m. (or, y'know, 8:45). More as we know it.

Critics Hail Marchesa and Marc by Marc Jacobs

Perhaps giddy from the unseasonable weather, critics were warm to Michael Kors and Rodarte and practically red-hot with lust for Marchesa and Marc by Marc Jacobs. Consider these adjectives (used in reviews) in order of increasing positivity: “almost camp,” “high-polish,” and “exuberant.” Find out which designer drove critics to the thesaurus in our review roundup.

Vera Wang Gets Heavy

Vera Wang's ready-to-wear collection is, unlike her bridal and red-carpet pieces, intensely personal. Wang has spent her entire adult life obsessed with fashion, and these are the clothes she wants to make because she dreamed them.

The Shining

Fall's runways were glittering with more than just A-list celebs. Sequins — which popped up last season — have stuck around for another go.

Donna Karan Is a Proactive Paranoiac

Diane Von Furstenberg and Narciso Rodriguez were glowing and ready to party at last night's Gucci/Madonna-hosted benefit for UNICEF and Raising Malawi at the U.N. But then, their shows were already over. Donna Karan was less sanguine. Her show isn't until tomorrow, and, like a fretful mother, she worried about being away from her collection for too long. "I'm nervous," Karan said.

Jen Mankins of Bird Likes Lim, Sarafpour, Cornejo, and Walker

Throughout the week, the buyers from Bird, Intermix, Henri Bendel, and Oak will tell us which runway looks they plan on stocking. In today’s installment, Bird owner Jen Mankins loves the accessories at Phillip Lim, the colors at Zero + Maria Cornejo, and the party dresses at Behnaz Sarafpour.

Today in Marc Jacobs Rumors: K-Fed to Sit Front Row?!

There may be a bribery scandal floating around the 69th Regiment Armory, but Marc Jacobs's show will still go on tomorrow night at the scene of the crime (bets are still out, however, on how many hours late he'll start). As Marc is the show of the week, rumors are flying about the blogosphere like they're, dare we say, going out of style. Cathy Horyn heard that Sonic Youth would be playing at the show and found it hilarious (why that's so funny, we have no idea).