Talley-Ho! This Year, Says Vogue Editor, Designers Let Them Eat Cake!

Before this afternoon’s Diesel Black Gold show at the Bryant Park tents, Vogue’s longtime editor-at-large André Leon Talley sat in the third row—“I have to dash out of here. If you sit in your normal seat you can’t get to the door fast enough,” he explained—discussing his excitement over “the sudden surge of diversity on the runway” he’d observed thus far at Fashion Week.

“It’s so much better than watching just an army of anorexic-looking girls from places like Croatia, or Serbia, or the Ukraine, or Russia; I mean, I think that school is going to go out fast, because it’s very unsettling to sit and watch a show where these girls look like they’re … they need food! They need to eat a piece of cake!”

He reserved special accolades for Carolina Herrera, who not only cast a diverse troupe of mannequins, but staged “the most extraordinary show I’ve seen as of today. Breathtaking clothes.”

Mr. Talley wore a gray suit and black-and-white striped tie; moments earlier, he’d been posing for photographs with a string of admirers who’d sniffed him out here in self-imposed seating Siberia, near the door.

The Fashion Show audiences, he intimated, had so far failed to impress. In fact, he’d even glimpsed Bermuda shorts!

“It’s important to turn yourself out for every moment in your life, no matter where you go,” he said. He singled out Renée Zellweger and Venus Williams, both front-row at Ms. Herrera’s show, the former “perfectly poised, in a beautiful dress, the most beautiful shoes—Louboutin—and the most beautiful hair,” and the latter, Ms. Williams, “the opposite of that, in another kind of Carolina dress, beautiful shiny shoes, beautiful hair, perfectly poised, perfectly groomed.”

“If you feel that turning yourself out is to wear bad Bermuda shorts, then that’s fine,” he concluded. “But I think that you need to look in the mirror.”

Incidentally, the unisex Diesel Black Gold show had a grungy, Nutcracker-Suite-meets-gas-station-attendant vibe, with bleached-out denim and tassled shoulder pads. Many of the models were from what Mr. Talley referred to as “middle Europa,” but only two were black.

Talley-Ho! This Year, Says Vogue Editor, Designers Let Them Eat Cake!