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That Time We Ran Into Orange is the New Black’s Danille Brooks at L.A.M.B. Spring 2015

Designer Gwen Stefani and models pose on the runway at the L.A.M.B. Spring Summer 2015 NYFW Presentation

Designer Gwen Stefani and models pose on the runway at the L.A.M.B. Spring Summer 2015 NYFW Presentation; image: Getty

It’s been about three years since the Gwen Stefani-backed L.A.M.B. showed at New York Fashion Week, but that doesn’t mean Gwen’s been resting on her laurels all that time. The label’s still been putting out collections, plus Gwen’s released a shoe and accessories line for ShoeDazzle. Oh, and she also had a baby. It’s understandable why she’d roll back on all the hub-bub and fanfare that comes with NYFW. But thank goodness for Spring 2015 – this season, L.A.M.B. made its triumphant return to the runway and brought back some of that familiar magic we love from the line.

In an expansive space at ArtBeam, the label set up giant LCD screens on one side of the room showing the (very diverse) cast of models in the clothes, twirling, dancing and just plain looking cool. Designers, take note. It actually is possible to cast great models of color in your shows.  I entered the show to see a sprinkling of girls on the runway – or rather the stage, which had bars on both sides so guests could sip signature cocktails as they watched the show.

Danielle Brooks

Danielle Brooks; Image: Getty Images

The clothes were what you’d expect from L.A.M.B.: lots of pattern and color, anchored by black and white with a dash of tribal influence, the signature aesthetic of the brand. The show was not without some celebrity presence. Lingering after the presentation for photos with fans was Orange is the New Black‘s Danielle Brooks, a.k.a. Taystee. The Julliard-trained actress was in high spirits, her curves banging in a slinky printed bodycon frock, debuting a new cropped haircut. “I love it, I do – it’s very freeing,” the actress told us of her new coif. We hadn’t recalled seeing her around the Fashion Week scene, but Brooks says this isn’t her first time to the rodeo – at least not really. “This is my first serious [Fashion Week]. I was working so much with Orange last season, I didn’t get to go to the fashion shows, but I went to last year’s first Fashion Awards show.”

Ms. Brooks intends on making a few more appearances this week as well, noting that she would be at Charlotte Ronson and Fashion Rocks, although beyond that, she’s uncertain as Orange is currently filming season 3. When work calls…

But it seems Brooks is enjoying her time in the spotlight since blowing up thanks to the success of the Emmy award-nominated Netflix series. “Giiirl… it’s just fun!,” she said with a laugh. “I’m enjoying the experience of it all, taking it all in. I’m very grateful, It happened very fast so it was a little intimidating. It took a minute to adjust – and I’m still adjusting. But I feel very blessed to be giving a voice to people who are like me, who feel they can relate to me in some way. For me, that’s what it’s about.”

Access to fashion shows? That’s just a nice perk. As for the clothes, Brooks was very enthusiastic about a pair of hot pink flared pants Stefani showed for this season. “[Taystee] would be all over them, and so would Danielle!” 

We have a feeling we’ll be seeing Ms. Brooks in those trousers very soon.

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