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New York Fashion Week: It's showtime!

New York Fashion Week has kicked off, heralding the start of a four-week international fashion frenzy, with London, Milan and Paris following in quick succession.

To predict what we'll see on Manhattan's key spring/summer 2013 runways is to pull off sooth-saying feats, but there are some safe bets to be made.

The show-stoppers will be New York-based Marc Jacobs, certified queen of American threads and head of the CFDA, Diane von Furstenberg, and American fashion demi-god, Ralph Lauren.

For the last two seasons, Lauren has sent models down the catwalk in Great Gatsby-esque style, cloche hats, plus-fours, dropped waists and dangling strings of beads at the ready, giving onlookers the distinctive feel that Daisy Buchanan could come bowling around the corner at any moment.

Marc Jacobs piled whimsy onto his last runway foray, dressing models in oversized, fluffy hats, giant droop-necked knits, pencil skirts and theatrical, buckled, clomping mid-heels. As far as spectacles go, it delivered.

But, as much as the stalwarts of NYFW will garner well-deserved attention, many eyes-in-the-know will be turned to some of its newer faces.


That is, to those for whom fashion may not be their prime notoriety: enter Katie Holmes and Victoria Beckham.

Beckham is well into carving a spectacular fashion career, her designs having been heaped with praise by everyone from Anna Wintour (who sat next to David Beckham at the last show) to Elle Macpherson. Form-fitting, sculptured, flattering and not for the faint-hearted, the ex-Spice Girl's power dresses have quickly become a regular fixture on her New York runways, despite only showing for the first time in 2008.

The picture is not quite the same for VB's one-time best friend Holmes, who is this week showing at NYFW for the first time.

Her label, Holmes & Yang, has likely provided welcome distraction for the ex-Mrs Tom Cruise in recent months - a high-profile divorce and swiftly settled agreement providing the kind of roadblock most designers would dread in the run-up to Lincoln Center's high-pressure circus.

A conservative style, punctuated by the odd exclamation mark of colour - a crimson shirt, say - tends to characterise the infant label, but whether its leading lady's newfound single status and indeed her new contract as the face of Bobby Brown make-up will infiltrate into the collection, we will have to wait and see.

And, on other fronts, we look forward to the uber-styling of one of Michelle Obama's favourites, one-time costumier Barbara Tfank, and the red carpet opulence of Oscar de la Renta, who most recently dressed Ann Romney for her RNC speech.

Let the catwalking commence.