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Charleston Fashion Week's ® (CFW) very own Model Liaison, Joe Quinn packed his bags, hopped on a plane to NYC and back again in 36 hours all by request from NBC's Fashion Star Designer & CFW presenter Sarah Parrott! Now that's commitment! When I learned of his plan I recruited him to give me the scoop on the highly publicized H&M party for these new celebrity design stars! All of our CFW favorites were there including Luciana Scarabello and (my fellow ESPN NASCAR Now fashion commentator) Nikki Poulos.  Here is how it went down in the words of Joe Quinn:



I have met some incredible friends since working for CFW, but this year Sarah Parrott and Nikki Poulos may have taken the cake. It was hard to say farewell after working hard and playing even harder with these two NBC Fashion Star contestants during their stay in Charleston.


Just as I started to recover from my CFW fashion coma, Sarah sent me a text with the perfect idea for a reunion as her date for Tuesday’s Fashion Star party at H&M in New York City. Yes please! And boy does H&M know how to throw a party.


Joe Quinn With Cyle Suesz


H&M’s three-story apparel heaven on 5th Avenue was home to Fashion Star who’s who, editors, models and one newly relocated photographer who Charleston misses dearly, Cyle Suesz!


After walking the red carpet and posing for pictures in the press line, Sarah and Nikki introduced me to the rest of their fellow Fashion Star contestants along with the buyers from H&M, Saks Fifth Avenue and Macy’s. While the VERY pregnant Jessica Simpson couldn’t fly to NYC for the party, celebrity mentors (and a personal style star favorite of Ayoka's) Nicole Richie and John Varvatos were on hand to celebrate with their fashion family.



Luciana, Sarah, Nizimiro, Joe & Ronnie


I made sure I showed off my H&M Fashion Star blazer designed by contestant Nzimiro Oputa. I chatted with Nzimiro and executive producer Jim Deutch (we both wore Nzimiro’s design) about the possibility of releasing multiple colors of his popular blazer. Fingers crossed!


On my way to locate one of the beautiful (all male model) servers for a champagne refill I ran into Paper Magazine’s Mickey Boardman and Hunter Hill, along with models Julie Henderson and Andrej Pejic.


Andrej Pejic photo by Cyle Suesz

After the H&M bash we headed a few blocks over to Copia, where there was a more intimate viewing party for Episode 7. Being with the contestants and buyers as they watched themselves on NBC was like Fashion Star euphoria.


In true NYC style, the adventure did not end at the after party. Let's just say this crew knows how to have some fun! Making my 7 am flight back to Charleston the next morning was almost impossible, but 36 hours in NYC was the absolute perfect therapy for my fashion coma! 


Nikki Poulos & Joe Quinn