I have previously seen Lindsay Lohan at Fashion Week IRL, and I wish I could link to the entire piece we wrote for The Cut about the September 2011 Cynthia Rowley show where everyone lost their SHIT about her presence, but when the magazine did a site update, a bunch of their archives got borked and you can only read the first paragraph! (Which is about Nigel Barker being diplomatic about Modelland.)  However! I just did some noodling, and the rest of this piece lives (unedited, obviously, although I think this ran pretty much as written) in my email. The rest of it reads:

We were still toasting in the glow of Nigel’s hotness when, right before the lights went down, a platinum-and-orange waif in tiny trousers, massive shades, and hypnotically puffy lips burst forth from backstage, hustling to a front-row seat with ruthless efficiency (and several security guards). For one glorious, confusing moment, we – and, we later learned, everyone in the rows around us — thought this walking creamsicle had to be Donatella Versace. Then, the entire room full of journalists sat ramrod straight and let out excited, disbelieving four-letter expletives as we all realized this was actually Lindsay Freaking Lohan. We then simultaneously commenced trying to figure out if she was wearing pants. (They were shorts. Small ones. Very, very small ones.) The take-home here for Lindsay should be that we all initially mistook her for somebody much crispier who is thirty years her senior, but we suspect instead she will mentally gloss over that part and focus only on how fast the crowd of blasé, already-burned-out fashionistas whipped out their smartphones and overloaded AT&T service. One photographer even went so far as to walk down onto the runway – which we’d been expressly forbidden to do, given that it was mirrored – and get in her face to take a photo, prompting event organizers to confiscate both his camera (which looked more expensive than her extensions) and his credentials, which they ripped from his neck with soap-operatic verve. The room applauded, led by Lindsay herself, as she settled into her seat between a shell-shocked-seeming Leigh Lezark — we feel you, Leigh — and Lindsay’s companion, who is either a Johnny Depp superfan or an actual pirate. Seriously, he had the long hair and the scruff and the vest flapping over a mostly-open shirt…  all he was missing was a parrot and an eye-patch, although we’d bet Lindsay has a couple of those floating around her hotel room somewhere.

Everything else that we observed in between Nigel’s smizing and Lindsay’s swashbuckling has been a bit lost in our mental shuffle, but according to our notes – which were eventually covered over with diagonal and impassioned scrawls about Lohan and her buccaneer  – we also spied Alexa Chung, in shoes that looked like wearable disco balls. They were about a hundred percent flashier than anything on House’s Lisa Edelstein, who is actually now The Good Wife’s Lisa Edelstein, which is probably why she is in town. She totally flew under the radar in a belted olive maxi-dress, minding her own business and exchanging pleasantries with Gossip Girl’s Kelly Rutherford (who waited in line and filed into the venue with the rest of us plebes). Their seatmate Aleksa Palladino of Boardwalk Empire looked mildly confused much of time, perhaps fearing that Lindsay’s buddy was going make us all walk the plank. And just down the row, there sat a makeup-free Samantha Mathis chatting with China Chow, as well as Chris Bosh, who was in attendance with his wife Adrienne — meaning that, after Dwyane Wade at rag & bone, we scored two out of the Miami Heat’s big three in one day. If only someone had called Bron-Bron, we’d have had a Yahtzee.  Oh well. Maybe Nigel will play with us instead.

Those were the days! (Sincerely, Fashion Week was really fun.) People really did FREAK OUT when Lilo showed and we all really did think she was Donatella at first. (Why would Donatella be going to CYNTHIA ROWLEY? Great question. But Lindsay was SUPER blonde and spray-tanned at this point, as you can see in the pic if you click through to The Cut.) I remember this story actually got picked up by Us Weekly and my editor was really pleased. Anyway, BACK TO THE CURRENT DAY: This Siriano show boasted a legit front row with real celebrities, including Quinta Brunson who looks, like, DELIGHTED to be seated next to Lindsay Lohan. I do not think anyone had their credentials dramatically ripped from their neck. I suspect Lindsay DID get a lot of people chattering about her, which is by design for her AND for Christian. She looks good! Let’s take a look!

[Photos: Gregory Pace/Shutterstock]