Designers, models and celebrities are all on hand to see, and be seen.
Glamour magazine Executive Fashion Editor at large Suze Yalof Schwartz has been there from the start.
Trends she's observed emerging at the show include a hard-rock look, super-short mini-skirts, and a.
Form-fitting, hard-edged clothes have been paraded down many a catwalk. Rock is back, with designers showcasing leather jackets and minis -- and there was lots of black, after a year of mostly gray.
Designers also paraded out jewelry, decorative feathers, and dresses painted like art. Diane von Furstenberg bucked the trend, showing elegant, feminine dresses
Plus, celebrities -- who haven't had a lot of exposure lately because of the writers' strike -- have been out in full force.
Among the sightings: Julianne Moore, Gisele Bundchen, Joss Stone, and Heidi Klum. Rumors are rampant that Cameron Diaz and Lindsay Lohan will be among those showing up later this week.
"The big trend," Schwartz told The Early Show co-anchor Maggie Rodriguez Monday, "is this kind of tough-love, which is these short motorcycle jackets paired with A-line skirts. That really looks modern.
To see photos from Fashion Week, click here.
"Also, we're seeing a lot of tights with open-toe sandals for fall, which I thought was very interesting. A lot of dresses. And we're seeing a lot of artistic work" -- splattered-color-type dresses."
But are these items the average woman could wear?
"Absolutely," Schwartz insisted. "These are things we're seeing on the runway, and then they're translated, and you're seeing them in malls across America."
To visit Schwartz's blog, click here.
Who said rock 'n' roll was dead?
One of the looks at New York Fashion Week was pure rock: form-fitting, hard-edged - and back in black after a year of mostly gray.
On Sunday, Max Azria brought back the bandage look of Herve Leger and outfitted rock starlets Joss Stone and Mandy Moore in the signature style in his front row. Rock & Republic turned for inspiration to the underworld and deep purple (the color, not the band).
Meanwhile, DKNY evoked a relaxed '70s glamour, while Diane von Furstenberg turned to the 1940s and Tracy Reese chose a ladylike look.
The rock look has been evident since the start of New York Fashion Week, when Nicole Miller veered away from pretty cocktail dresses and invited Joan Jett into her front row.
Clearly, they are not the only ones who still love rock 'n' roll. Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week runs through Feb. 8, with Oscar de la Renta, Zac Posen and new incarnations of Bill Blass and Halston yet to preview their collections.
DIANE VON FURSTENBERG
In the first real bellwether collection of the fall season, Diane von Furstenberg favored retro glamour with an international flair, bucking just about every trend that seemed to be emerging at New York Fashion Week.
The first looks on her runway were inspired by wartime Berlin, including a glen-plaid blazer with blue satin elbow patches worn with a wool jersey illusion dress. For the evening in a secret supper club, there was a siren's wrap gown in copper jersey.
The crowd included Susan Sarandon, who was wearing a colorblocked knit dress, a look that von Furstenberg indicated will carry into fall, although in more subtle colors such as bronze, teal and black.
Women count on von Furstenberg for chic clothes for the office, and she didn't disappoint. No reason to be a meek mouse, though. How about a fuchsia wrap dress in a shiny faille fabric with a tempering merino wool vest in a dark purple on top?
Max Azria figured out 51 ways to tie a bandage before he presented his Herve Leger collection Sunday.
A skintight, bandagelike dress is the signature of the Leger label, which the Los Angeles-based Azria - of BCBG fame - recently resurrected by putting many celebrities in vintage versions of the formfitting yet surprisingly flattering silhouette.
This was the first time a new line was presented at the Bryant Park tents to editors, stylists and retailers along with likely customers Joss Stone, Mandy Moore, Sophia Bush and Padma Lakshmi.
Azria never strayed from the bandage formula but he tried it in more fabrics, including chunky knits, and experimented with coats, pants and tops, too.
But the dresses, ranging from minis to gowns, still were the stars here. Azria wasn't afraid of calling attention to them, adding all sorts of embellishment - feathers, sequins and grosgrain ribbons - with varying degrees of success.
Donna Karan showed off her handiwork with the fall DKNY collection with the theme of "eclectic glamour."
There was a '70s vibe to the bow blouses, slouchy wide-leg pants and floaty peasant dresses, but what really stood out were the knits, especially fringed sweater dresses. A silk georgette fringed skirt looked like individual pieces of yarn - camel, purple, gold and red. Those same colors were featured in the silk prints used for balloon-hem minidresses and plaids on jackets.
The DNKY collection targets a younger and trendier customer than her signature - and more expensive - Donna Karan label that will be shown to editors, stylists and retailers on Friday.
DKNY also has men's clothes. Next season, Karan is offering them dark denim jeans with flannel wool blazers worn with cardigans underneath.
Tracy Reese's refined look returned in a series of ladylike outfits that were just edgy enough to advance the designer's signature style.
Thanks to some bright colors, asymmetrical details and a mix of unexpected prints, the fall collection felt new, but underneath was Reese's core piece: the all-occasion frock.
The highlights of the show, held at the tents at Bryant Park, came at the beginning and end: a sheath with a draped neckline in a light-blue abstract rose print and a shift dress in a pink-and-black rhododendron print.
She also mixed florals with paisleys, and paisleys with animal prints for a shot of youthfulness.
ROCK & REPUBLIC
Rock & Republic is all about gangster chic for fall.
With an orchestra - complete with a shiny baby grand piano on the runway - providing much of the 1970s rock 'n' roll soundtrack, sleek black suits dominated the runway Saturday night. Other old-school, underworld classics, such as fedoras, trenchcoats and watchman jackets, brought the mafia looks of yesteryear to an audience that included Joss Stone, Christina Milian and Tyson Beckford.
The toy-gun accessory worn in a holster on slim, low-slung black trousers was too literal and unnecessary. But the suits, especially those for women, looked right on target.
The palette here was limited, mostly black, gray and the occasional flash of deep purple.
The collection by creative director Michael Ball and input by new designer David Cardona certainly fit in with the rock 'n' roll look emerging as a trend, but some audience members mused after the show - what happened to the denim that made this label famous?