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stylist JOANNE WATKINSON.

IF fashion week was a vehicle it would be a steam roller, charging into four cities in as many weeks, bringing with it chaos, excitement and glamour.

The first stop for this stylish juggernaut is, as always, New York City, where the already fabulous island of Manhattan becomes even more so, teaming with off-duty models and glitterati.

This season the organisers have claimed it was their most "democratic" yet. Ricardo Tisci, designer at the helm of super-brand Givenchy, made some tickets to his New York runway show available to non-industry people.

Of course, the hoi polloi would not have been permitted to enter through the same door as the celebs and fashion royalty - that would be a step too far.

Still, it is a giant leap for fashion as a business. For too long it has been shrouded in secrecy, the paparazzi convincing everyone that the runway shows are wall to wall A-listers and people wearing 7" heels and bonkers clothes, when in reality, those there for work (buyers and journalists) are often head to toe in black and increasingly wearing flats (shock horror) to allow them to scoot from show to show.

The world wide web has opened up fashion to the masses in many ways. Thanks to live streaming and social media, we can all be on the virtual front row.

While I don't think this is the beginning of the end of fashion's elitist behaviour, I do think it signals a change.

Opening up the show experience is a clever move, now we're all invited to the party, will we all start wanting to shop the collections? Time will tell.

The Givenchy show itself was a showstopper, breathtakingly beautiful with more than a hint of Alexander McQueen.

The open-air setting added even more drama and Kim-ye (Kim and Kanye) swept in like the King and Queen of Sheba.

Next stop, London Fashion Week where the democratic theme continues. London Fashion Weekend is organised by the British Fashion Council and is the opportunity for the public to watch shows and live the Fashion Week experience. Check out londonfashion weekend.co.uk

CAPTION(S):

Kim and Kanye at the Givenchy show in New York Picture: Getty

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Sep 17, 2015
Words:367
Previous Article:tried & tested.
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