By Patricia Reaney
BEDFORD, N.Y. (Reuters) - Runway shows at New York Fashion Week have become more elaborate each season and designer Ralph Lauren took it up a notch by combining his love of fashion and vintage cars to showcase his Fall 2017 collection.
As actresses Diane Keaton, Jessica Chastain and Katie Holmes watched from front row seats, models in tailored suits and brightly colored gowns strutted past a red Ferrari, yellow McLaren and a silver Porsche at the Tuesday evening show.
It was the first time Lauren showcased his men's and women's collections together.
Unlike previous years when the veteran designer transformed his flagship Madison Avenue store in Manhattan into a catwalk, Lauren opted to debut his in-season collection north of the Manhattan in Bedford, New York.
He held the show, which was followed by a sit-down dinner, in the multi-level garage that houses his collection of dozens of classic cars including Bugattis, Mercedes-Benzes and Porsches.
Lauren combined his love of cars and fashion in a collection that kept to the roadster theme. It featured classic dark double-breasted suits for men and women, bomber jackets and parkas, slinky evening dresses and coats in bright yellow and red.
"I loved the show, all the suits, everything," Keaton said afterwards. "It couldn't be any better."
It was the third in-season, see-now, buy-now, collection for Lauren, who designed Melania Trump’s sky blue jacket and dress for Inauguration Day and is known for his classic, preppy and western looks.
Celebrity model Bella Hadid wore a bright red strapless gown with a tulle skirt on the runway and was followed by Kendall Jenner in a striking yellow and black full-skirted gown.
Other gowns were long and sleek in cobalt blue and metallic gray that contrasted with the mainly black and white palette for the suits, dresses and trousers for daywear.
Lauren added other bursts of color with a red dinner jacket for men and mid-length coat for women.
New York Fashion Week, with venues throughout the city, attracts about 100,000 people and generates $880 million in revenue for New York City, according to organizers.
The semi-annual event that ends on Wednesday with shows by Marchesa and Marc Jacobs will be followed by fashion shows events in London, Milan and Paris.
(Editing by Marguerita Choy)