Chris Benz must have been born under a particularly dehydrated star, because he's had some bad luck with models: The first time we attended one of his presentations, a model wilted under the lights, and last February one thirsty girl stormed off in a tizzy twice. So it actually almost made sense Monday night when, right as Benz's show came to an end and the models were filing off the dais, a girl swooned and then dropped like a stone to the ground, taking another model down with her. She was out cold for at least fifteen seconds as organizers rushed to help her, and the crowd including guest Johnny Weir looked on in shock. The model came to, seemingly none the worse for wear, but maybe she should seek out Weir for help with any lingering ego bruises. If anyone knows about having to get up after a big fall, it's a figure skater.
When we arrived, we could swear we spied Debbie Harry of Blondie, tucked away in the back corner talking to people and staying very far away from the action (and, oddly, the clothes). In a sense we didn't blame her, because after waiting in a line that wrapped around the block, everyone attending the presentation squeezed into a very narrow rectangular venue that precluded things like movement and breathing. We did see Greta Gerwig inching along the dais and taking really close looks at the models' printed shoes, and One Tree Hill's Shantel VanSanten pointing out things she wished she could take home with her. The situation seemed a bit less suffocating for Susan Sarandon, probably because she is Susan Sarandon, and everyone was so afraid of trampling the awesome that they cut her a wide berth. Susan, a fixture at Benz's shows, wore orange plaid pants and a solid jacket in a matching shade, and at one point appeared to exchange information with Weir's publicist. Please, Susan, expand your table-tennis empire by inventing Ping Pong On Ice. It's time.
The appearance of Jessica Szohr marked our first Gossip Girl sighting of Fashion Week, which we were surprised about until we remembered she is the only person still employed by Gossip Girl who never actually appears on Gossip Girl and therefore has ample time to go to fashion shows. She looked cute we loved the glossy red pumps she paired with her multicolored blouse and black jeans and she toted along the same posse of pals she brought to Benz last season, minus ex Ed Westwick, yet still including ex-castmate Sebastian Stan, who looked like he'd just peeled himself off the floor of his apartment. Maybe Jessica got Stan in the (figurative) divorce, or maybe Ed just got sick of asking him to wash his hair.
Weir, by comparison, shone like a gem, in part because he had a bunch of them glued to the lapels of his purple, yellow, and red plaid Chris Benz blazer. "I'm in his studio all the time, tearing through his archives, and I found this," Weir told us of his ensemble, which also included a green shirt and brown knit pants. "I'm in, like, a complete woman's outfit right now and I love it." It's been a busy Fashion Week for Weir, modeling read: being a glitter-delivery system for Richie Rich on the first day, skating in the Elise Øverland show, and designing a capsule collection with Adrienne Landau that he's showing on Thursday. And yet he still looks totally fresh and, well, awake, whereas we feel run over by a pedicab. "The key is to have a good makeup artist to help you when you go from show to show," he grinned. "Also, no matter how drunk or hung-over you are, wash your face. You only get one shot with your skin."
We are way more concerned with whether he will get another shot at the Olympics, because the figure-skating championships this winter were aesthetically drab without, among other things, Weir's signature costumes of feathers and neon lacing. "I have them in my closet, lined up like skins," he confided. "New ones I've never worn, old ones, everything. I'm competitively hoping to come back in the next season." Hopefully he'll resurrect his old "Poker Face" exhibition routine along with his competitive edge after all, he did confess to having seen Lady Gaga's Grammys ovule. "I was impressed," he admitted. "I would like to travel by egg." After a beat, he added, "Mine would've been sparkly." Well, there's always September.