Full Disclosure: we watched Project Runway alum Christian Siriano's Spring 2010 blockbuster show from the AmEx Skybox, gloriously high above the sheer chaos in the Promenade below. Pre-show celeb-spotting (Tim Gunn, Nina Garcia, Leigh Lezark, Alessandra Ambrosio) gave way to a collection swathed in silk with an applause-rousing finale of magical gowns - all perched atop Siriano's INSANE shoes for Payless.
Gosh, where do we start? The prolific line included fun, lady-like cocktail dresses evoking the 80s in the softest possible way, ranging from peaches-and-cream and champagne tones to blue lagoon watercolor splash to an orange-red that virtually set its dresses ablaze. An angular alpha-female pants suit got the tiniest flounce in a minimally ruffled waist tailoring move, whose power was matched by Siriano's fierce accessories, including his Payless shoes (more on those later) and Derby-worthy hats. There was even a vibrant marine-hued body suit, which set the AmEx shopper guests abuzz with confusion, but displayed the designer's ability to meld pattern and texture delightfully.
And then came the gowns. Lifting the audience to rousing applause was the tiered chiffon strapless princess ballgown, which reminded us of Carrie Bradshaw's Paris Oscar de la Renta confections, except Siriano's swapped out overcast gray for flaming red; followed by a seemingly liquid silk number overflowing on the runway with dropped bustle tailoring and the prettiest pink we think we ever did see. The faux croc (we're still working on what the actual material consisted of) harmonized with the body so nicely, with the skin's edge to counterbalance. Oh, we were very much in love.
Most notably, perhaps, were the monster shoes. And we don't mean monster in a figurative way, their six-plus-inch heels were like retractable talons from aliens - one model giggled and pulled hers off during the final walk, and the others simply lumbered precariously down the runway threatening to spill. Tim Gunn paid us a visit after the show and together we laughed off the possibility that those were his Payless shoes - until it was corroborated by several sources. It. Simply. Cannot. Be. If professional walkers can't even pull them off, how can normal people?!
As a little sneak peek into our chat with Tim Gunn, let's just say that after the show, he recalled Siriano's Project Runway audition and his then-reaction that he had, for the first time, seen a true fashion prodigy. After this show, we'd have to concur.