Primer: A Field Guide to Fashion Week’s Characters

Twice a year, Fashion Week turns the New York city into an all-out style spectacle. Here's a guide to the cast of characters.

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MILAN, ITALY - FEBRUARY 08: A model walks the runway during the Manila Grace Autumn/Winter 2012 2013 Fashion Show on February 8, 2012 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Stefania D'Alessandro/Getty Images)
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New York's Fashion Week happens Feb. 9 - 16, when the already trendy city's fashion quotient will increase a hundredfold. Here's a guide to some of the folks you may spot rushing about town for previews of next fall's fashions — like this makeup artist and model spotted at last September's Alexander Wang show.
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<b><i>The Model.</i> Natural Habitat:</b> Runways, catwalks and hair-and-makeup chairs. <b>Handheld Device:</b> Anything that can withstand marathon texting during marathon makeup sessions. <b>Sustenance:</b> The 5 C's: Coffee, Champagne, coconut water, cigarettes and (free) clothes.<b>Uniform:</b> Spring collections (on the runway) or skinny jeans (off the runway).
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<b><i>The Publicist.</i> Natural Habitat:</b> Around every corner, at every restricted-access threshold. <b>Mode of Transport:</b> "We are a taxi and subway army, no car services here," says agency honcho <a href="http://www.nbcnewyork.com/blogs/threadny/THREAD-Secrets-of-a-Publicist--Patrick-Bradbury-on-Fashion-Week-Planning--128675693.html">Patrick Bradbury</a>. <b>Sustenance:</b> Pressure, canapes. <b>Uniform:</b> Black on black, clipboard, earpiece.
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<b><i>The Editor.</i> Statement Piece:</b> Grace Coddington; impenetrably-dark sunglasses. <b>Mode of Transport:</b> Condé Nast car service; the arms of burly security men. <b>Sustenance:</b> Starbucks, power. <b>Catchphrase:</b> Silence.
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<b><i>The Fashion Photographer.</i> Handheld Device:</b> DSLR-anything (work), Holga/ lomography cam/ Polaroid (play). <b>Sustenance:</b> Pen tops. <b>Catchphrase:</b> "You're blocking my shot." <b>Distinguishing Marks:</b> Genuflection.
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NBCConnecticut.com
<b><i>The Street Fashion Photographer</i> Handheld device:</b> DSLR (preferably a Nikon). <b>Sustenance:</b> Gaggles of women vying for their camera's attention, <a href="http://www.nbcnewyork.com/blogs/threadny/THREAD-Garance-Dore-Scott-Schuman-on-Working-Together--Growing-Their-Blogs--127725503.html">strong working relationships</a>. <b>Defining Trademarks:</b> A photographer's eye and an editor's aesthetic; purposeful wandering with searching once-overs among Fashion Week lines.
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<b><i>The Fashion Journalist</i>. Natural Habitat:</b> Anywhere a story may be filed, whether it be Starbucks or the newsroom. <b>Handheld Device:</b> Flip cam, scribble-filled Moleskine notebook and pen. <b>Sustenance:</b> The adrenaline of a looming deadline. <b>Distinguishing Marks:</b> A lexicon honed to describe all things sartorial.
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<b><i>The Real Housewife.</i> Natural Habitat:</b> A step-and-repeat. <b>Sustenance:</b> Anything provided by the network. <b>Statement Piece:</b> Anything from her own line on QVC. <b>Catchphrase:</b> "I have been doing fashion shows for charity for years, and now I'm hawking this new brand of water..."
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<b><i>The Teen Blogger.</i> Natural Habitat:</b> School, backstage and at non-Fashion Week-related parties downtown. <b>Mode of Transport:</b> Arranged by her parents. <b>Sustenance:</b> A-list adoration, Japanese Pocky sticks and Orangina.
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<b><i>The Phenom</i>. Natural Habitat:</b> In everyone's good favor; exclusive parties. <b>Uniform:</b> Boyish ensemble of super-skinny jeans, a white T-shirt and greasy locks.n<b>Sustenance:</b> Coolness, critical acclaim and support from other it-boy pals.
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<b><i>The "It" Celebrity.</i> Natural Habitat:</b> The front row; sweaty-but-stylish music festivals; DJ-ing at Fashion Week after-parties. <b>Sustenance:</b> Home-delivered macrobiotic green juices; VIP discounts; being in front of the lens.
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<b><i>The Local Ingenue.</i> Natural Habitat:</b> Brooklyn or the Village; front row at her friends' shows. <b>Sustenance:</b> Oscar buzz; banh mi sandwiches. <b>Uniform:</b> Her friends' clothes; paparazzi-shielding sunnies.n<b>Catchphrase:</b> "I'm just here to support [insert first name of said designer]."
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<b><i>The Buyer</i>. Natural Habitat:</b> About town, all over the world, in a shiny new office. <b>Sustenance:</b> Catching up with old magazine friends. <b>Catchphrase:</b> "But how will it sell in the fly-over states?"
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Manila Fashion Observer, Gawker
<b><i>The Intern.</i> Natural Habitat:</b> The fashion closet. <b>Mode of Transport:</b> Her own two feet. <b>Sustenance:</b> Luna bars, Diet Coke and the terror of seeing Anna Wintour in the elevator. <b>Statement Piece:</b> Armloads of samples and dry cleaning. <b>Catchphrase:</b> "If I mess this up, I'm dead."
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<b><i>The Executive</i>. Natural Habitat:</b> Boardrooms, power lunches. <b>Handheld Device:</b> Two Blackberries: One domestic, one international. <b>Sustenance:</b> Peter Luger steaks, power. <b>Uniform:</b> A Zegna that costs as much as an assistant's salary. <b>Approach:</b> With an exclusive, lucrative collaboration deal or an HR scoop involving their star designer.
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<b><i>The Celebrity Editor.</i> Natural Habitat:</b> Exclusive parties among regular celebrities. <b>Sustenance:</b> Champagne, double air kisses, Twitter. <b>Uniform:</b> The it-designer ensembles that drive best-dressed lists.
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<b><i>The Crasher. </i> Natural Habitat:</b> Just shy of the inside, most often just outside Alexander Wang's show. <b>Sustenance:</b> Free food. <b>Catchphrase:</b> "I swear, I'm on the list."
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