It took one minute for the freight elevator carrying Thom Browne and the 31 models to go from the 2nd to 3rd floor, and I took it as opportunity to put down my camera for the first time in hours and look around.

What I was seeing was not just the staging area for another fashion show, but instead the near perfect manifestation of a man’s vision. The clothes were of course beautiful, but it was more than that.

It takes a certain amount of ego to look at the world and say, “I see what you are doing, I am not going to do that”. Fashion’s establishment calls for sleek silhouettes and trending color palettes and looking around that elevator I got the sense that Mr. Browne never cared much for the establishment. 

The thing I love most about fashion, and women’s fashion in particular is its’ ability to inspire emotion. So, standing in that elevator shoulder to shoulder with Mr. Browne and watching the last look float out of the elevator, I felt mostly that I wanted to take a chance. To believe not only in an idea, but in the ability for exceptional people to help make it a reality. 

Minutes later the last look was back in the elevator and over the dull roar of applause I could just make out one of the models whisper a thank you in Mr. Browne’s ear. In my mind it was from all of us, for having what it takes to say no to mediocrity and yes to himself. 

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