Fashion Week Front Row: Anna, Graydon, Betty

What Everyone Is Talking About

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NEW YORK ( -- Spied in the front rows of the major Fashion Week shows in the tents at Bryant Park are the familiar faces of fashion media -- Anna Wintour, Glenda Bailey, Robbie Meyers, even Graydon Carter. But for Anna Sui's collection last night, a different kind of couture scribe cropped up: Ugly Betty.
Ugly Betty went to her first fashion show! (Sort of.)
Ugly Betty went to her first fashion show! (Sort of.)

Betty Suarez, the title character of ABC's new fall dramedy "Ugly Betty," took a spot among the editors from Elle and Allure to write a column for The Daily Front Row, just as she would on TV.

The show, premiering Sept. 21, stars America Ferrara as Betty, a writer for the fictional magazine Mode who does not fit the stereotypical fashion-plate mode with her glasses, braces and plus-size figure.

The promotional stunt was the highlight of a week of "Ugly Betty" tie-ins ABC conducted with Fashion Week, which included hiring a host of Betty look-alikes to hand out magazines before shows. The TV show had been buzzed about for months in the fashion community (Allure editor Linda Wells even devoted an entire column to it in her mag's October issue) and even gave the Bettys some recognition.

"The fashion editors knew who she was and they loved her," said Paula Conway, a publicist for ABC Entertainment who attended the Sui show with "Betty." "This is a character you can really root for. She's not going to become skinny, she's going to stay a real woman. The character really stands out."

Watercooler caught up with the Betty who attended Fashion Week over the phone moments after Sui's show in Bryant Park. (But -- keep up with us now -- this Betty is not America Ferrara, but New York actress Lindsay Kane, 21, who happily spoke to us as Ugly Betty. OK? OK.)

MediaWorks: So Betty, you just got out of your very first fashion show during Fashion Week. How are you taking it all in?

Betty: You know, it's not that overwhelming, but it is my first big high-end fashion show!

MediaWorks: Had you heard of Anna Sui before tonight?

Betty: I have! I mostly knew her because they sell her perfume at the makeup store. I hope I can get a free bottle before I leave!

MediaWorks: Did you meet Anna Sui herself?

Betty: I didn't, but I did get to meet the fashion editor of Elle and I got my picture taken with the editor of Vogue. Oh, and I met Mischa Barton.

MediaWorks: Okaaay. So, what's it like sitting in the front row?

Betty: It's a different world. You're so close to the clothes, so close to the models. To see everyone so serious is pretty crazy. And everyone in the back row wishes they were in the front row.

MediaWorks: How are you going to encapsulate this experience into your column?

Betty: I don't even know where to start! It's not going to be a column, it's going to be an essay.

MediaWorks: Are you going to any more events before the week is over?

Betty: I think this is my big night out, but supposedly I might be able to go to a "Project Runway" show on Friday. If I can just stand for that one that'd be great.

MediaWorks: How are you ever going to top this experience?

Betty: You know what? It's a fashion show, I can't really ask for much more. I got a bottle of Anna Sui nail polish, so maybe I'll sample that on my train ride home to Queens. I can't wait to tell my mom!
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