By  on November 11, 2013

The collections are a month-long orgy of intense stimuli—a dizzying amalgamation of sights, sounds and, sometimes, triggers on other senses (cue the pleas for industry-wide air conditioning) occurring on the runway and off, the results of countless individual episodes that all play into the shared experience of those who go to the shows.

The sights dominate. Once upon a time these were concentrated on the runway, with the key viewing the clothes and the models (remember the runway reign of the Supers?). Then came the celebrity invasion, and eyes and cameras turned to the front row to capture which actor/musician/athlete/reality star was sitting next to which actor/musician/athlete/reality star type. More recently, the dressed-to-be-seen, shot and posted set arrived. Some among them have turned getting dressed into an income-generating activity, while others are in fact traditional professionals who enjoy walking the glorious fashion walk performing the more mundane tasks pertinent to their employment. Wafting in and out: the protesters, yesterday’s PETA people replaced by today’s breast-baring feminists.

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