Catwalk Cut: Backstage Beauty at Kate Spade Fall 2013 Friday 22 February, 2013

Studio 54 chic and Manhattan beauty combine at the Kate Spade Fall 2013 presentation.

The day that designer Kate Spade staged her Fall 2013 presentation, the sky opened it’s belly and let out a rain of snow and it’s awful cousin, “wintery mix.” (For all of you lucky people who haven’t been paid a visit by “wintery mix,” let me fill you in: It’s a hybrid of snow and rain, like slush falling from the heavens in big globs, that sometimes mixes in some skin-piercing shards of ice pellets. Fun!) For whatever reason, all cabs cease to exist in NYC when the weather turns evil—especially on the Upper East Side. So, my trek to the Kate Spade show is a treacherous one, filled with anxiety that I won’t make it. I’m hoping the beauty look will be worth the battle to get there.


It is—especially the manicures. When I rush over to nail guru Deborah Lippmann, she doesn’t disappoint with a nail design that she says signifies “New York during the disco era. It’s Studio 54 chic.” This reads as long, almond-shape nails polished into the glossiest, high shine possible and punctuated with a gold pyramid stud.


“We’ve created two looks: One is black using my Fade to Black polish, and the other is a vivid, custom-blend pink that has this real zing to it,” she says. For the eye-popping fuchsia design, Deborah first layers a white base (Amazing Grace), which she says will brighten up the ensuing hue. Though she custom-crafted the pink polish for the show, she says you can achieve the same look by polishing one coat of I Kissed A Girl followed by a coat of Between The Sheets.


On both nail designs, Deborah places a pyramid stud an 1/8-inch above the cuticle—not surprisingly, this stud detail is repeated throughout the stud-heavy Kate Spade collection. Deborah shares this invaluable, stud-worthy tip: “When you purchase your pyramid studs, look for an open back.” Why? Well, typically when you adhere a flat-back stud (or rhinestone), the glue has a way of showing. With an open back, you simply fill the hole with glue; “it won’t seep out on the sides,” she says. Place the stud on the nail and let it sit for a second, and then press down gently. Apply top coat around the edges of the stud, and then gently press down again. This will allow the stud to sit “seamlessly” on the nail.“There’s nothing worse than placing stones or studs on nails and seeing the adhesive seep out from underneath them; it looks messy,” Deborah laments. With this trick, your stud designs will be golden—guaranteed.


(One of two hairstyles created for the Kate Spade presentation.)

For the hair, Garnier Fructis hair lead Tommy Buckett is creating two styles: a slick bun and a bouncy down-style. “This is a party girl, during the 1970s. She’s a Warhol girl,” he says. “We want to capture the intense energy of Manhattan and the ‘anything goes’ vibe of Studio 54.” The style he’s crafting in front of me, a “full glitz, big, pretty, bouncy hairstyle,” receives extensions for volume, rather than length. He’s using a mix of Garnier volumizing products—Fructis Style XXl Volume Thickening Mousse to prep; Fructis Style Hi-Rise Lift Root Boost for lift at the roots; Fructis Style Volumizing Anti-Humidity Hairspray to grant buoyant hold—to achieve the down-style. “Just layer them all in; they’re light enough not to weigh hair down,” he says. He then curls hair with a 1-inch barrel “because you can always brush out the curls; they won’t be as tight as you think. The smaller barrel will ensure your waves won’t fall out during the day,” he says. Tommy’s also using Fructis Style Volume Extend Pure Volume Dry Shampoo, his must-have for instant volume and texture.


(Jouer makeup lead Neil Scibelli crafts a bold red lip using Jouer Hydrating Lipstick in Simone for a “classic Hollywood meets modern-day chic” aesthetic.)

Unfortunately, I have to jam to another show in the snow, so I bid adieu to Tommy reluctantly because I haven’t gotten a glimpse of this finished style, and I’m not able to pin down the steps for the up-style, which I find plenty of finished models flaunting. Oh well—as I find, New York Fashion Week marches on.

Would you wear this pyramid-stud manicure by Deborah Lippmann? Sound off in the comments!

Karie L. Frost Signature

(All images property of Karie L. Frost/


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