Five Fantastic Ways to Spend Fashion’s Night Out

(Photos: UnBeige)

The torrential rains have ceased (Anna Wintour must have put in a call), the clouds have parted, and Fashion’s Night Out is nearly upon us. Now in its third year, the after-hours shopping and schmoozing event has gone global, but the epicenter of the retail-themed frenzy remains New York City, where Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week kicked off today at Lincoln Center with spring 2012 collections from the likes of Richard Chai, Porter Grey, and Tadashi Shoji, who took inspiration from Portland-based photographer Ron van Dongen‘s stunning images of tulips. Here are our five favorite ways to spend the sartorial night of nights. Thirsty for more? Check out the official listing of events and happenings on the Fashion’s Night Out website. See you tonight at the shops!

  • Two words: Reed Krakoff. We can’t get enough of the designer’s fresh take on modern luxury. Tonight the Coach veteran opens his gorgeous New York boutique (831 Madison Avenue) for an event celebrating Prabal Gurung, winner of this year’s Swarovski Award for Womenswear. Not on the list? Admire Gurung’s fall collection in the windows and look for us toward of the back of the store, fondling the printed haircalf coat and stuffing ourselves (elegantly) with Laduree macaroons. Meanwhile, check out Krakoff’s world online
  • Zero + Maria Cornejo knows how to throw a party. Tonight the label is partnering with Housing Works on charitably minded bashes at both of its downtown outposts (33 Bleecker Street and 807 Greenwich Street). Revelers can feel good in knowing that 5% of their purchases—might we suggest Cornejo’s library-chic IQ Dress?—will go to help New Yorkers living with HIV/AIDS, join a raffle to win a set of rare photography and art books, and try to convince Mark Borthwick to bestow upon you one of the stack of original Polaroids he’ll be doling out to lucky fashionistas. 
  • The Phaidon Store (83 Wooster Street) is focusing on fashion photography, with a two-pronged party that will celebrate the newly published Guy Bourdin (introduction by Alison Gingeras!) and fete the opening of an exhibition of photos by uberblogger Garance Dore. And be sure to check out the new monographs on Dieter Rams and Hella Jongerius
  • Not feeling the fashion? That’s no excuse to stay in and watch The Millionaire Matchmaker (come on, that show is creepy). Head for West Chelsea (525 West 19th Street), where David Zwirner gallery is hosting a public reception (6-8 p.m.) for the Artists for Haiti mega-auction that the gallerist and art dealer has organized with Ben Stiller. The jaw-dropping selection of works now on exhibit includes new paintings by artists including Neo Rauch, Marlene Dumas, and Raymond Pettibon, who also did the lettering for the event identity
  • And the big Finn-ish: Crate and Barrel’s Marimekko Shop (650 Madison Avenue) is hosting a DIY workshop, where design lovers can create custom necklaces made from bold Marimekko fabrics. Home fashion, music, and refreshments are also promised. And since the rain’s bound to return when the clock strikes midnight, seize the opportunity to purchase a Unikko rain jacket or Pirput Parput poncho.