Ageless Beauty

By Kinsey Labberton

Fashion can be so discriminatory against older women. I hear complaints about it regularly from mi mamacita, but that was the beauty of the first night of Charleston Fashion Week – options for every age.Anne’s opened the program with a collection of conservative and classy selections. Not likely to lure College of Charleston freshman, but smart choices for the sophisticated Lowcountry lady. The music was pumping, champagne was swilled, and things appeared to have gotten off to a terrific start. Then K. Morgan took the stage. This is the first year in Charleston Fashion Week for the recently opened boutique and the crowd burst into applause at the fresh new looks. When the owner herself stepped onstage to take a bow, the applause swelled with appreciation when all of a sudden the woman took a misstep and plunged through the middle section of the runway floor. Gasp! Photographers stormed toward her, when a camera totter himself also tripped and fell into the hole. No one popped up to show they were okay, rather the poor lady crawled the length of the runway on the ground to the safety of backstage. The MC Brook Ryan of 95SX Two Guys and A Girl in the Morning eased the crowd and suggested grabbing another drink before the next selection. Eventually K. Morgan came back on stage for a victory walk. Luckily no one was hurt and it was all a fluke deal. Apparently all the models and store owners did a dress rehearsal walk the day before, but Ms. Morgan had missed the practice run. What she didn’t know was the middle of the floor was actually just sheer fabric to allow light from below and only the periphery was actually runway.

Saks Fifth Avenue showed their traditionally expensive designer items, pretty standard stuff. The models pranced with ease and nearby seated to my right, two Desperate Housewife look-alikes oohed and ahhed with enthusiasm.

Putumayo, a rather quiet player in the King Street collective presented their showcase “all linen, all the time.” Or at least that’s what I’ve dubbed it. Flowing linen pants, linen skirts, linen dresses with fluffy linen scarves, the clothes appeared perfect for Charleston summers, but did hint at a lack of diversity. Perhaps ideal for the girl selecting a sundress for this summer’s upcoming Dave concert.

It was a modge podge from The Spot and their items felt like filler when followed by the evening closer, StyleExchange. A whole slew of new models fronted clothes most of us would love to wear if we were Elle The Body Macpherson. You’d have to be, one tiny fashionista took the stage in what looked to be a long tunic tank top and high cropped leather jacket. It was a Brittany Spears moment, as the model had not been paired with any undergarments and her pert bottom was flashed as she high stepped it off stage. If that didn’t excite the crowd, then the sight of one taut and tawny young man in nothing but a sports coat and Clementine colored briefs definitely did. A group of older ladies in front of me stood up to get a better look and grab a picture. All I can say is to go on stage and wear that, well sir, that took balls.

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