Reality Couture

Phaedra Parks of ‘Real Housewives of Atlanta’ at Jeremy Scott NYFW Show

Real Housewives of Atlanta star Phaedra Parks landed in the front row at Jeremy Scott’s New York Fashion Week show—and, Isabel Wilkinson reports, she could learn from Times critic Cathy Horyn’s poker face.

The Jeremy Scott fashion show during New York Fashion Week is always part runway spectacle, part disco party—and the event on Wednesday afternoon was no exception. Before the show a crowd of photographers descended on Joe Jonas, who was sandwiched (and probably sweltering in a leather jacket) next to Leigh Lezark from the Misshapes. Power publicist Kelly Cutrone was right in the middle of them all, picking reporters from the crowd to talk to Jonas.

Then we spotted Real Housewives of Atlanta star Phaedra Parks, chatting in the front row next to Paper magazine editor Kim Hastreiter in a tan puffer jacket with a fur hood. As the lights dimmed, the usual parade of over-the-top crazy outfits began to make their way down the runway. There was Simpsons underwear, a My Little Pony–inspired dress, and a frock made out of rainbow horsehair. It was a pop-culture throwback to the early 1990s—and even the AOL jingle “You’ve Got Mail” blared over the loudspeakers.

But our eyes were fixed squarely on Parks, who made her emotions known as every look passed on the runway. She danced to the thumping beat of ’90s Japanese techno; raised her eyebrows in disbelief and mouthed “OK!” when she saw a look she just didn’t understand; furrowed her brow in disgust when she truly hated something. If there’s one thing you can learn from New York Times fashion critic Cathy Horyn, Phaedra, it’s poker face. But then, when one sparkled bustier passed her on the runway, she pointed and whispered to her seatmate: “Now, that I could wear.”

After the show, we asked her what she thought. Anything wearable? “Absolutely,” she said. “I’ve never seen that many skirts on men outside of Atlanta!” And then she kissed and hugged us, and was swallowed by the crowd.