Alex McCord

Alex gives her take on Bethenny and Jill's relationship, and reacts to the Brooklyn fashion meeting bickering.

on Apr 1, 2010


When we are able to show great drama AND benefit a worthy organization by highlighting them on the show, everyone wins. Such is the case with Brooklyn Fashion Week{end}, a twice-yearly event benefitting the Brooklyn Style Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to mentoring young and low-income designers and helping them launch their businesses. The founder contacted us last spring to see whether Simon and I would host a presentation for them. We did, and afterward decided to get involved by joining the board, and we invited our friend Derek to join as well. My goal for this season was to raise the bar for design and get a top level designer for the finale, alongside brand new designers who are part of the program, and Simon, Derek and I thought it would be great to invite some of our fashionista friends to help out. I spoke to several designers who are friends of mine, and was particularly drawn to Loris Diran as he’s a native New Yorker whose story starting out was similar to many of the kids in the program today. I hoped everyone would like his work as much as I did.

Ramona, Kelly and Bethenny joined us that afternoon, and we made headway although I had to tell everyone to focus and stop bickering. I don’t blame Bethenny for bringing up the Post article – it mentioned all of our names and we’d all seen it or at least heard about it. I asked the only question I had, which was whether she was the source, and B said no. Sarcasm is one thing but I’ve never known Bethenny to lie, so I was good to go. Unfortunately Kelly saw an opportunity to rehash the whole “Madonna/I’m up here/You’re down there” thing again and I had to tell them to either stop or take it outside. Can you imagine what it would have been like if Jill were there, too?

There were a couple of reasons I didn’t ask Jill. I didn’t want her drama with Bethenny to overshadow the designers and I wasn’t sure whether she was the right person to get involved with this particular part of the process. We were choosing one established headline designer, but also looking at lots of new and up-and-comers, some of whom were showing their first collections. I knew Ramona and Kelly would be good at seeing ideas and potential. Although Bethenny tries to stay out of the fashion world more than the rest of us, she knows what she likes when she sees it, plus I felt she wouldn’t condemn someone because they were nervous or maybe their samples were made on a budget. Jill has said she only likes to go to “big name shows” during fashion week and honestly I didn’t want her making some brand new swimwear or denim designer feel badly because they weren’t on par with Rosa Cha or G-Star. I love to see people just starting out, which is why you’ll see me out with Simon during fashion week hitting the Academy of Art University shows; that’s where you can find the next Jil Stuart or Marc Jacobs.