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NY Runway Report

Top designers are in a fightin' mood with cool clothes made for a warrior princess — and a Good Wife

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Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo oxblood brocade ball gown with gunmetal mosaic top. Photo courtesy of Carmen Marc Valvo
Nicole Miller look 4 fall 2014 collection
Nicole Miller faux leather and metal jacket with embellished sleeves, pintuck denim jeans. Photo courtesy of Nicole Miller
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo black doubleface gown with persimmon crystal lace trim. Photo courtesy of Carmen Marc Valvo
Nicole Miller look 19 fall 2014 collection
Nicole Miller draped stone print combo top and studded leather skirt. Photo courtesy of Nicole Miller
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo ink cocktail dress with steel chainmail insets. Photo courtesy of Carmen Marc Valvo
Nicole Miller look 37 fall 2014 collection
Nicole Miller embroidered neoprene mesh jacket, cropped jersey top and peacock feather skirt. Photo courtesy of Nicole Miller
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo gunmetal/black brocade ball gown with double face embellished top. Photo courtesy of Carmen Marc Valvo
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo mocha metallic lace gown. Photo courtesy of Carmen Marc Valvo
Nicole Miller look 28 fall 2014 collection
Nicole Miller feather embellished neoprene skirt, charcoal cashmere sweater and leather biker jacket. Photo courtesy of Nicole Miller
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo sapphire silk shantung gown with steel chainmail detail. Photo courtesy of Carmen Marc Valvo
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo ruby/black silk shantung gown with gunmetal yoke. Photo courtesy of Carmen Marc Valvo
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Nicole Miller look 4 fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Nicole Miller look 19 fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Nicole Miller look 37 fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Nicole Miller look 28 fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection
Carmen Marc Valvo fall 2014 collection

NEW YORK — Tory Burch isn't the only designer in a Game of Thrones mood. Top designers are in a "warrior princess" frame of mind for fall, creating tough clothes for the woman who wants to kick a little ass and look good while doing it.

Carmen Marc Valvo sent out a lean-and-mean collection to the tune of Pat Benatar's "Love is a Battlefield" and set a take-no-prisoners tone with his opening look: A black chainmail tunic trimmed with calf-hair over tight leather pants and booties with criss-cross metal straps from his fall shoe collection.

 Top designers are creating tough clothes for the woman who wants to kick a little ass and look good while doing it. 

His daytime shifts and evening gowns combine delicate fabrics like shantung lace and brocade with steel chainmail and gunmetal breastplates. Valvo said he looked to the opulence of the Ottoman Empire for the metalwork and mosaic patterns that created "armour-like protection." It is a departure from his more delicate looks in previous years, but seems right for the times.

Valvo showed his tender side, too, with an emotional goodbye on the runway to model Taylor Foster, who has been his muse for more than a decade.

Nicole Miller has a similar bent. She featured the classic '80s hit "Warrior" by Scandal with Patty Smyth on her playlist as models walked out in leather jackets, studded boots and neoprene skirts, along with a healthy dose of attitude. While Miller said she was inspired by Boudica, queen of the Celtic tribe that took on the Romans, the collection has more of a modern tough girl vibe, although Miller softens it up a bit with skirts made of peacock feathers and her signature digital prints.

I was delighted to see Carrie Preston on the front row, because she's my favorite in a recurring role as the brilliant idiosyncratic attorney Elsbeth Tascioni in The Good Wife, for which she won an Emmy for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Dramatic Series. 

"It's just such a gift to be able to play a role that's so mercurial. She has so many different things going on inside her head, and yet she's able to jumble all of them with equal attention. It's a once-in-a-lifetime kind of role," Preston said.

Preston will be back for one more episode of The Good Wife on March 16 before returning to film the final season of  True Blood, where she portrays the sassy Arlene Fowler.

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