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Fashion Icon Daphne Guinness Gets Dressed in the Barneys Windows

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At 5pm today, Daphne Guinness will begin her preparations for the Met Gala live in the windows of Barneys on Madison Avenue. Below, intrepid Racked liveblogger Fawnia Soo Hoo reports from the scene.

4:06pm: Hello! I just arrived, and I'm watching them set up. A small crowd has gathered and Simon Doonan is on hand doing TV interviews. Barneys VP of women's fashion, Amanda Brooks, is looking seriously fierce in seven-inch pewter stingray platforms and an embellished coat.

4:09pm: Amanda is doing an interview with Video Fashion now, but I'm hovering to find out what she's wearing. (For the moment—she'll change later, of course.) Wonder if this is just a typical Monday office outfit for her.

4:12pm: Goodness! There's so much going on already that I forgot to look at Daphne's window. It's a minimalist white backdrop that just contains a Lucite vanity table and matching stool with a gorgeous, taupe, feathered dress hanging on the wall.

4:15pm: Word is that Daphne is wearing black, so that frock might just be decor. Also, spoiler alert: I hear she's coming out dressed.

4:17pm: Simon Doonan is interviewing two FIT students now. One is decked out like a Thanksgiving turkey in a strapless gown and the other is wearing a mini gazebo complete with flowers. I'm overhearing the designer saying she was inspired by Isabella Blow.

4:20pm: OK! So Amanda Brooks is wearing a Giambattista Valli dress, a Philip Lim coat, Fenton bracelets, and Calvin Klein shoes. Whew. The PR people again emphasized that she will be changing later.

4:23pm: Simon Doonan is carrying a personalized Goyard messenger bag. Adorbs!

4:28pm: I'm kind of shocked. Aside from the FIT gazebo girl, there is only one other person in the crowd wearing a fascinator. So not representing! At least I can say there are no fedoras—one bowler, though.

4:30pm: Spoke briefly with the two FIT girls, and they turn out to be majoring in business, not design. Pretty impressive!

4:36pm: It's starting to get more packed now. People are also trying to talk their way into the pen on the other side of the rope. "My back hurts, can I sit down for a bit?" It's not working.

4:41pm: Oh no! Flower down! A branch just fell off the gazebo fascinator. I also spy a guy in an Edith Head turban and serious guyliner.

4:45pm: I'm loving these fashion students. Forget Lady Gaga's little monsters—Daphne Guinness has her own. One guy is wearing a backless shearling shield top, a mossy-looking poncho, and pantyhose with coiled fur patches running down his legs to his feet. And no shoes! Uh oh, he has a run.

4:48pm: The student body is a mix of Parsons and FIT and they're all standing on risers facing the windows now. I wonder if they're rivals, like UMich and Ohio State but with fashion. Maybe they'll have a walk-off later?

4:52pm: The passerby crowd is starting to gather and the security guys are directing them to the periphery of the area, which kind of stinks since they won't be able to see anything. It's nice the students have the front row, though. I heard one student telling his friend they should talk their way in using their crazy outfits and "try to find one of those girls who look like they know what they're doing."

4:53pm: OMFG it's like 7 minutes until showtime and a fashion student is leaving because—of all things—her feet hurt. Honey, there's a lifetime of that to come if you want to be in this industry.

4:55pm: There are little girls here and one has a sort of fascinator on. Cute!

4:56pm: So cute! Simon Doonan is hanging in the fashion student pen. I think most of the kids are too intimidated to talk to him.

5:00pm: She's out!

5:01pm: She slithered across the stage wearing a space-aged bodysuit.

5:02pm: An assistant in a sparkly leotard came in and took the feather dress off the hanger. Now Daphne is behind frosted glass, doing a Josephine Baker-esque dance.

5:03pm: I think she's naked behind there. We may have seen bare tooshie.

5:05pm: There's some floating about of scarves. And a weird jerky motion. I think the dress is on! Maybe it was tight.

5:06pm: Daphne walked out with her head swathed in said scarves, then unwrapped them and walked off. Now we're waiting for her to come out and get into her car. It's a mess.

5:08pm: And then she walked out and into her vintage convertible, and miracle of miracles, I managed to get two shots—one of the back of her dress.

5:09pm: That was it. I heard one student say, "I waited two hours for that?"

5:15pm: Hamish Bowles of Vogue just strutted out in a tartan suit. I'm assuming that's what he's wearing to the ball. Amanda Brooks is taking a Blackberry pic of his shoes. They're patent leather with pearl tassels.

5:18pm: Breaking! Hamish is taking a cab to meet Daphne!

5:20pm: OK, that's all I got. Whew.

Barneys New York, Madison

660 Madison Avenue, Manhattan, NY 10065 (212) 826-8900 Visit Website