NEW YORK (CBS) The first day of New York Fashion Week opened to a glamorous start at its new home in Lincoln Center Thursday.
Over 20 collections were presented, but it was Richard Chai and Christian Siriano that stole the spotlight with their spring 2011 collections.Special Section: New York Fashion Week
Chai, a rising star in the New York fashion scene, presented his secondary women's label, Richard Chai Love, and went for the minimalist approach. His collection was filled with neutral hues and fluid layers, hinting that next spring's trend will be comfortably chic. Bandeaus under transparent shirts, flowy pants, and textured tailored jackets were dominant.
Later, Siriano, the pint-sized winner of "Project Runway" Season 4, upped the glam with his over-the-top evening gowns and cocktail dresses. Models strutted down the runway in a sea of ruffles, bright colors, and earthy prints. He completed each look with bold, sky-high heels from his Payless shoe collection.
Sitting at the front row of his show were actors Alan Cumming, Jamie-Lynn Sigler and Maggie Grace.
10 aspiring designers from the current season of "Project Way" also unveiled their collections at the tents on Thursday. Jessica Simpson, the surprise guest judge for the show, joined host Heidi Klum and judges Michael Kors and Nina Garcia.
Richie Rich closed the first day with an energetic collection that included surprise guest Ellen DeGeneres, who walked in the show's finale.
New York Fashion Week will continue Friday with presentations from Nicole Miller, BCBGMAXAZRIA, and Port 1961, among others.
Friday will end with the second coming of Fashion's Night Out, a global initiative to bring back consumer confidence in the fashion industry. A bevy of celebrities and designers are expected to hit retailers around New York City, Los Angeles and London to help promote the event.