“Let me get to my seat! It’s the most important thing,” André Leon Talley sang as he entered the cramped, unfinished-seeming venue where Zac Posen showed on Monday night. ALT’s regular Fashion Week date, Whoopi Goldberg, followed in what was essentially a kimono, shooting the photographers a coy smile over her shoulder. “No, but why is it a vendetta?” we overheard someone else say as they drifted past, and frankly, given the choice, we would have picked the vendetta over the seat, because the former involves more potential drama, drink-throwing, and devastation. ALT may need to re-examine his priorities.
With that one vendetta slipping through our fingers, we decided to sidebar with noted sports fan Anna Chlumsky, because at least a good sports rivalry can inspire vengeful oaths and rage blackouts and such — and, from prior years’ eavesdropping, we knew she’d be able to tell us what was happening in the U.S. Open’s Men’s Final. And, in fact, the instant we mentioned the tennis, she took out her phone, noting that she was cheering for Marin Cilic: “I’m Croatian-American and he’s Croatian, and I have to check … shit, what’s happening?” She examined her phone, and then screamed with joy, pumped her fists in the air, and showed us her ESPN app, which had Cilic winning in straight sets. She then apologized for freaking out, although truly, we were delighted to have another sports fan in the house. “This is pretty cool! I’ve watched him for years and I’ve always rooted for him. How cool that two guys we don’t know … God, I could talk about this all day. And now I have to pay attention to all of my guys on my fantasy team. Kansas City did NOTHING for me yesterday.” It’s always nice to talk to a woman who understands the two sides of our own coin.
Near the end of the show, Uma Thurman swanned by with past Posen mainstay Gina Gershon, the latter in a tailored dark suit, and the former in a creamy knit dress and a ponytail. Uma had a touch of the Wintour about her, in that the crowd on the runway parted for her when she swept in and when she swept out, with equal swiftness (on both parts). This sadly means she didn’t get a chance to hobnob with snowboarder Shaun White, who was attending his second lady-centric show of the day, officially putting him on the Matt Damon path to being a Noted Womenswear Enthusiast. At Milly this afternoon, White had on thick gold chains with his all-black duds and popped some ibuprofen in the front row; at Zac, he was in different dark clothes and no jewelry, which left us free to ogle his short haircut and goatee. We concluded the combo makes him look like an evil mixmaster.
But we were most excited to see the treasure that is Kiernan Shipka, whose parade of ladylike frocks at event after event often outshines the wardrobes of more experienced actresses — yet who was clad today in a rare pair of slacks. “I don’t like pants as much, but I do wear them,” she said of her red-carpet style. “And I mean, for every day, trust me, I love my jeans. This is all just like playing dress up.” Given that she works on Mad Men, one of the most professionally stunning sets on television, it’s no surprise that Shipka has picked up a couple tips over the years from the people around her. “Janie Bryant taught me that style can tell a story. It’s not just beautiful clothes, it’s actually conveying some sort of message, and I think that’s something that’s really stuck with me,” Shipka said. “I really appreciate it, and her.”
We wondered if Shipka, who started on Mad Men when she was just 6 years old, has ever actually watched the entire series, or if her parents cover her ears and eyes on Sunday nights. “In the beginning, I wasn’t allowed to watch any of it except my scenes,” she says. “So I would just watch my scenes and focus on Sally’s story line, but then lately I was just like, ‘Oh, I need to Netflix it all now.’ It’s just really a treat to see it all with my memories behind it, and all that extra perspective.” She’s 14, and she’s better spoken than a lot of adults. So we promptly turned around and thoroughly geeked out to Mama Shipka about how delightful and poised and down-to-earth her child is. Between her and Willow Shields at Alice + Olivia — both 14, both erudite and thoughtful, both giggling that they really don’t wear heels very often and are still getting used to them, throbbing toes and all — we’re feeling optimistic about the upcoming passel of child stars and the parents who’ve figured out how to raise them into actual functional humans. Maybe that’s the important thing. Although … man, that vendetta is still awfully tempting.