Elise Overland's tough-glam spring 2011 runway show didn't present many surprises, save for the mid-lineup violin soloist. Full disclosure: We initially set out for the show with high hopes of spotting Val Kilmer, who was (quite surprisingly) listed on a media alert. Alas, he was either a no-show, or it was an optimistic alert.
The violin intermission, however, certainly captivated the packed house, as the violinist walked the runway, playing all the while, before finally retreating to thunderous applause. At just about the exact halfway mark for fashion week, on a day filled with cold rain, it was the perfect small burst of something surprising and quite beautiful.
Meanwhile, the collection consisted of mini-dresses and military-inspired separates (complete with a sassy captain's hat) and, perhaps most notably, leather on dresses and jackets. It all seemed to be tailor made for the celebrities sitting front-row like Nicky Hilton, Kelly Osbourne, Amanda Hearst, Arden Wohl and a bevy of other such socialites. These are pieces that demand confidence in their wearer, whether in those looks with lots of structure, but dramatically so, on one giant sleeve or an impeccably fitted cropped blazer; or thoughfully exposed lengths of leg -- the most demure mini in the collection balanced its length with a high neck and long sleeves, but called to mind a young Michelle Phillips to bring it right back to its dreamgirl status.