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It was a sea of champagne and shopping bags in New York and Los Angeles’ major retail corridors Friday night as designers, celebrities and thousands of shoppers – and sightseers – hit the streets for the second annual Fashion’s Night Out. Registers were ringing, cameras were flashing and the most famous faces of fashion mingled amongst fans from Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue to Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills.
Kenneth Cole's Rockefeller Center flagship was certainly rockin’, at least for the lucky shoppers who got inside. A line snaked around the block for several hours, and the scene was just as frenetic in the store, where a DJ spun tunes and the crowd sipped cocktails. Several dozen fans got the chance to pose with the designer, who encouraged them to "make a statement" by creating personalized signs to hold in the photographs. "Fashion's night out brings out the best in everyone," Cole said.
On Madison Avenue, George Esquivel was working the room at Fratelli Rossetti, where he chatted with Footwear News about the new lines, as well as his big 40th birthday coming up (the designer will celebrate while in Milan for Fashion Week).
Just a few doors down, ping-pong balls were flying at the Stuart Weitzman store, where shoppers were invited to challenge the designer, an enthusiast of the game. Weitzman was sporting shoe-shaped Silly Bandz on his wrist, which conveniently matched his purple T-shirt, displaying a "SW" logo similar to the signature Superman look. "[The shirt] came about because everyone said, ‘You wear Clark Kent glasses,' I thought I'd surprise them," the designer said. "[It stands for] Super Woman, not Stuart Weitzman, for my customers.”
Meanwhile, interior decorator (and Brian Atwood love) Nate Berkus was spending some time at Bally before heading over to Bergdorf Goodman, where karaoke awaited. While he said he was planning to sing a duet with a pal, he would steer clear of the obvious. “I’m going to try to avoid ‘Sweet Caroline,’” he joked.
There was also buzz at the Jimmy Choo store, where Tamara Mellon proudly unveiled the brand's much-anticipated collaboration with Ugg. "[The reaction] has been amazing. Everyone loves the Uggs," she said. But Mellon couldn’t spend all night showing off the sheepskin boots; she was rushing off to Calvin Klein for a special Bryan Adams performance. "I'm a fan," she said.
At Roger Vivier, “Gossip Girl” Leighton Meester helped the brand tout its newest fragrance, while Jaslene Gonzalez, winner of "America's Next Top Model," season eight, chatted with shoppers.
Giuseppe Zanotti spent time at his Madison boutique, after hanging at Bergdorf Goodman, welcoming celebrity guests such as Whitney Port of MTV’s "The City" and talk-show personality Wendy Williams. The designer chatted with FN (in between signing shoes for shoppers), describing the night as a combination of Cirque du Soleil, Woodstock and the Super Bowl for the fashion world. "Thanks to this event, [there is] a new possibility to create a communication between all levels. Fashion is fashion, [from] $19 to $9,000."
The store was packed over at Nine West, where guest designer Joss Stone performed and attracted a crowd, including Sammi "Sweetheart" Giancola from MTV’s "The Jersey Shore" and Jay Manuel from "America's Next Top Model."
But one of the biggest Fifth Avenue sightings was Karl Lagerfeld, who was headed into Fendi and trailed by a swarm of awed fashionistas.
And, on Lexington Avenue, Steve Madden employees beckoned shoppers with a megaphone, while a line formed out the door at Payless ShoeSource, where guests eagerly awaited the arrival of designers Christian Siriano, Isabel Toledo, Lela Rose and Pat Field.