The front row at today's Diesel Black Gold show felt a bit like getting winked at by a super-promising dude on Match.com, only to have him ignore your return wink and disappear into the ether forevermore. When we arrived at the Pier 92 venue, we scanned the names taped to the VIP front-row seats and immediately singled out one in particular: Wyclef Jean, rapper, activist, and thwarted Haitian presidential candidate. It made sense to us — after all, we will not be running a country anytime soon, either, and as the universe kills us softly with this wrong, we handle it by ogling clothes and drying our tears with our seat assignments. Clearly we would have much in common with Mr. Jean.
Alas, we never found out: Our excited, optimistic photo of Jean's name on a vacant seat turned out to be more prophetic. "Weird," frowned a staffer. "He's supposedly playing a concert for [Diesel's owner] in Italy on Friday, so you'd think he'd come." Well, maybe he was backstage because the press are killing him softly with this throng.
We did see the Ubiquitous Leigh Lezark, in tiny jean shorts and tights so laddered you could use them to climb up and clean your gutters. Paz de la Huerta showed up in a slinky black number with illusion netting in the back, through which we could see her leopard bra. Between that, her bright-red lipstick, and her dramatic facial expressions, we can't help wondering if she has ever met Courtney Love; they seem like they'd either be best friends or mortal enemies, either of which would make for fun tabloid reading.
Twilight werewolf Julia Jones also took in the show from the front row — a whopping three hours after arriving in New York from Salt Lake City, where she was relaxing during what's left of her hiatus before Breaking Dawn shoots in a month. We cannot fathom how early that means she had to get up, Utah-time — the Diesel show was at noon — but she looked more awake and fresh-faced than we did, and ready to take in her first show of the week. "I wish I'd been more into fashion (as a kid)," she told us. "I grew up in Boston, where my mom was a professional-type person who I guess didn't think fashion was that important, but then I modeled for three or four years and got a bit more into it." She said her favorites are Diesel jeans and Phillip Lim dresses — "nothing too crazy; I'm pretty safe," she laughed, noting that she doesn't work with a stylist except at major events. When we pointed out being seated next to the theoretical Wyclef, she grinned, "I didn't even see that until I sat down, and I was like, 'Whoa, that will be interesting.' Totally awesome, but interesting." We agree, so we're sad for both Julia and ourselves that the Clef didn't stop by. In fact, he so strummed our pain with his fingers that we need to be killing it softly with beer. Strong.
See more: Diesel's Spring 2011 Collection