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Chris Benz: Sparkle and Celebrities

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Chris Benz's star is clearly rising, if one gauges such things by celebrity attendance: Susan Sarandon and Kelly Osbourne (with poodle in hand) both attended his colorful, sparkling presentation downtown.

    Benz's affair with color continues for fall -- the designer really has become known primarily for his refreshingly saturated, color-soaked collections -- with ikat-print asymmetrical dresses and cowl-neck cocktail dresses, as well as a rbight green plaid suit. Colorful furs made an appearance here, too, in the form of green fur-trimmed gloves and a big fur jacket in a rather St. Paddy's Day shade of emerald.

    Overall, just walking into the Drive In Studios on 18th Street (where Benz also staged his presentation last season) was like a heart-lightening, warming jolt -- to look at all the the colors and sparkle, you wouldn't necessarily have though you were looking at a fall collection (which, after all the black and leather we've seen, we can report is highly refreshing).