If you've ever watched a fashion show and said to yourself, ''those aren't real people out there on the runway,'' Donna Karan has an answer for that.
For her DKNY runway show on Sunday, Karan presented - along with the models, of course - an assortment of non-models: a DJ, TV presenter, printmaker, a few students, a biologist, a ''night-life hostess,'' and, in the most intriguing entry in the show's written programme, a ''tattoo artist/pro skateboarder''.
They walked the runway with confidence and drew enthusiastic cheers. Some were built almost like models, others weren't.
Some had (gasp) grey hair, but all looked great in Karan's colourful clothes.
Karan said she decided to display non-models because ''DKNY really is about the streets. It's about the streets of New York, the energy of New York, the people of New York.''
The show began with a short film featuring the young New Yorkers about to walk the runway, speaking about where they live - Greenpoint in Brooklyn, for example, and Tribeca - and why they came to New York.
Angel Haze, a musician, wore a favourite DKNY look: a long black faux fur vest. Devan Mayfield, a painter and a health practitioner, wore a crepe houndstooth and lace shift dress. Daniel Bamdad, a TV presenter, wore slim black jeans and a black cotton cut-off shirt. Masha Korchagina, an actress and biologist, wore a black and white shearling ''cape vest.'' Melissa Burns, the night-life hostess, wore a striped shearling coat.
Some of the nice looks went to the models, too, including an edgy black vinyl pleated slip dress, a delicate grey lace dress with a pleated hem, and the filmy silk, lace and flannel long slip dress that closed the show - all in grey.
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