- Associated Press - Thursday, February 6, 2014

NEW YORK (AP) - New York welcomed Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Thursday amid icy sidewalks, crosswalks piled high with slush and temperatures in the 20s.

Even dedicated fashionistas mostly wore boots to attend the shows rather than stiletto pumps. And since designers were showing their fall-winter collections in the tents at Lincoln Center and other venues around town, it made sense that boots and inviting outerwear - from bathrobe coats at Richard Chai to purses that looked like fur muffs at BCBG Max Azria - were in abundance on the runways.

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ORANGE IS THE NEW - WELL, YOU KNOW


The strapless jumpsuit actress Samira Wiley wore Thursday to the BCBG Max Azria runway show was quite different from the one she might wear as Poussey Washington, her character on the Netflix prison-themed series “Orange is the New Black.” But the color was no accident: “Of course it’s orange!” she said. (Though the design house called it red.)

Wiley also wore stylish pumps, which she acknowledged gave her some trouble on the icy streets, but most other attendees bundled up in wool sweaters and boots. Designers Max and Lubov Azria dressed their runway models in relatively sensible - relatively, we stress - knee-high black leather boots rather than the usual strappy sky-high stilettos.

There was lots of fur, too - in a fox-fur scarf, for example, or a fur motorcycle jacket, or a ginger-hued coat with a raccoon collar, or a shearling tunic in the appetizingly named color of “soy chai.” Shearling leather capes looked warm, as did purses that looked like big fur muffs - called “hand-warmer clutches.”

The city is still digging out from a snowstorm earlier this week, with another expected in a few days. But Azria said it was no big deal. “I think the weather is beautiful,” he said.

-Jocelyn Noveck, http://twitter.com/JocelynNoveckAP

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HIGH HEELS AND SLUSH DON’T MIX: RICHARD CHAI‘S MODELS IN SENSIBLE SHOES

Thank you, Richard Chai, for the sound winter footwear and bathrobe coats on your wintry runway.

Snowy weather outside and streets covered in slush had many fashionistas attending New York Fashion Week in no-slip, sensible footwear. Chai did the same for his model men in snow boots and ski caps.

No doubt the ladies showing off Chai’s Love collection for women also appreciated their low-heeled mules and ankle boots to go with all that bedroom hair and the slouchy, wide-belted bathrobe coats in plaid and sage green.

Fall jackets and trousers in black and toffee: noted, along with a touch of dazzle in disco sequins.

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