Fall Fever

updated 04/25/1994 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 04/25/1994 AT 01:00 AM EDT

AS USUAL, THE SIGHTS AT NEW YORK CITY'S FALL FASHION PREVIEW last week were dazzling. Dolly Parton and Mariah Carey cheering on Calvin Klein. Julia Roberts oohing and aahing over Richard Tyler. Richard Gere applauding wife Cindy Crawford, who was working the runway for Isaac Mizrahi. Reclusive Robert De Niro trying to keep a low profile in the second row.

And the clothes weren't bad either. On display during the weeklong event at Manhattan's Bryant Park: spaghetti-strapped wet-suit dresses in hot pink and bright orange from Donna Karan, Elizabethan ruffles from Ralph Lauren and ostrich-feathered boleros from Tyler for Anne Klein. Proclaimed actor Kyle MacLachlan, whose girlfriend Linda Evangelista prowled the runway for Anna Sui: "It's a beautiful spectacle."

All week the buzz seemed to be on fuzz, with designers featuring shaved-mohair tunics, woolly ponchos, even furry minis over black Spandex unitards. (Almost as interesting was the fur that wasn't flying: Jennifer Flavin, recently dumped by Sly Stallone, calmly walked the same runway as Debbie Dickinson, whose sister Janice just gave birth to a daughter widely believed to be the actor's.)

Of course, whether anybody will really wear this stuff is open to debate. But designer Sui's father, Paul, who pronounced his daughter's collection "different," isn't concerned. "Fashion is into the future, it's not now," he said carefully. "If I see different, I know it's okay."

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