NYFW is not quite what it used to be. It’s barely a week when it used to stretch over 10 days and the shows seem to be all over the place even though official headquarters is at the Spring Studios (which is just a stone’s throw from the Holland Tunnel). There used to be swag galore but now only the occasional front row seat has a gift bag on it (usually two or three beauty items, a scarf or tote bag with a designer’s logo on it). There are certain shows and events I have attended multiple times over the years and they do not disappoint. I am glad that a few things have stayed consistent in a town like NYC where everything is changing (and let’s not forget that retail fashion is changing even more thanks to everyone buying online)!The legendary beauty pr firm Tractenberg & Associates have a special space called Tractenberg Studio on another floor of their office building at 116 East 16th Street in Gramercy Park and it just happens to be the spot for NYFW’s best lounge. Press and influencers do “walk arounds” to booths dedicated to each brand that Tractenberg represents–those brands include Tocca, Burt’s Bees, Hairdo USA, DryBar, Korres and John Frieda. Along the way, guests get to earn product by doing social media on new products by each brand. I was especially enthrall by the booth helmed by the press reps for Tocca’s stunning fragrance. Guests were able to write letters to loved ones which will be mailed to those lucky folks with a product from the captivating Florence scent which has a stunning hyacinth top note. You can see the cool flower-covered mailbox that we put our letters in above!Sweet Retreat sponsored by the sweet folks at Mars Wrigley as well as the combo dating/business website Bumble gave visitors a chance to indulge in sweets, listen to networking lectures from the Bumble head honchos and even get manicures. I was thrilled to be able to try Dove Hot Chocolate as well as devour one of their classic ice cream bars on a stick. I was happy to learn about the Bumble app (which is new to me) and get a mani in the new Starburst watermelon color. (I tried Watermelon and Red Fruit Punch Starbursts for the first time at this event and fell in love!) Everyone left with generous bags of candy that included tins of Altoids, rolls of Lifesavers, Dove hearts and loads of Starbursts. What I found most interesting is that many NYFW attendees and Bumble members were hanging around in the lovely lounge areas with truly unique candy displays and doing some serious networking. I think some big fashion biz deals actually went down at this fun two-day event which is always open to the public (although you have to book your tickets via Eventbrite ahead of time).I am a huge fan of Shalini fragrances and the Pierre Hotel since their events have such a sophisticated yet relaxing air. Shalini makes their highly sought after fragrances from only organic herbs and flowers grown in France and their recent event during Fashion Week celebrated their “fragrance of love,” Amorem. There was a display of all the Shalini products in chronological order and I could not wait to spritz all of them. The Pierre’s super creative Executive Chef Ashfer Biju was on hand to mix and mingle and explain how he managed to create bites for the party that featured ingredients that matched those in the fragrances including a ceviche! I fell madly in love with the mocktails being served called Scent Of A Woman which consisted of ginger beer and muddled strawberries (by the way, many scenes of the Al Pacino film Scent Of A Woman were filmed at The Pierre). Female guests who stayed at The Pierre during Valentine’s Week were gifted with small bottles of Amorem (those lucky stiffs). Shalini products can be purchased at Bergdorf Goodman and more info can be found at www.cafleurebon.com.The New York Pet Fashion Show is held every NYFW in the penthouse of the Hotel Pennsylvania and attendees can can up close and personal with the pampered pooches during the event. There is a press show meet and greet as well as a mini flea market of creative pet item vendors. The theme of the show this year was sci fi chic so some of the pet attire was inspired by Star Trek, Lost In Space, Plan 9 From Outer Space and even Ziggy Stardust. I get a kick out of the owners matching costumes and admire how much work it takes to make such detailed costumes. Each year awards are given out for best costumes as well as to attendees who are dedicated to animal protection organizations. This year several adoptable dogs walked the runway and actually found their forever homes by the end of the event. Pictured above are several pooches mugging for the camera during the intermission including “runaway bride” Mitsu The Fashionista–a Shitszu who was a bridesmaid at a doggie wedding mom to benefit Waggy Tails Rescue the next weekend. (You can follow her on IG under the handle @mitsuthefashionista.)The Red Dress Collection Show benefits the American Heart Association features many female celebrities walking the runway in (what else) red gowns that for the most part can be purchased at Macy’s who are always one of the iconic shows sponsors. This year one of my all time favorite pop divas Darlene Love walked the show and I was so thrilled to see her boogie on down when she hit the end of the runway. The show is always topped with a performance by a female music superstar and this year’s hot show featuring four male dancers was helmed by country legend Shania Twain. This year we got a double treat as Meghan Trainor performed earlier in the show! Celeb models included Heather Graham, Jackie Cruz, Constance Zimmer, Bailee Madison, Jeru Ryan, Jennifer Tilly, Gretchen Carlson, the aforementioned Darlene Love, Kimberly Williams-Paisley, Laura Marano, Loren Gray, Paris & Nicky Hilton, Marin Hinkle, Sara Haines, Luric Ross, Tamron Hall and Sunny Hostin. Something special about this year’s Red Dress show is that 2019’s Westminster Dog Show Best In Show winner King walked the runway and had the honor of being the only male in the show. For more info on the Red Dress Collection and the Heart Truth program for women, go to www.hearttruth.gov.