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Fashion's Night Out extravaganza

September 06, 2012|Leonor Vivanco, @lvivanco | For RedEye

Calling all Chicago fashionistas!

Interested in checking out fashion shows, getting makeovers, and sipping bubbly?

Then, you'll enjoy Thursday's Fashion's Night Out in Chicago, which coincides with the start of New York Fashion Week. It also marks the finale of the Magnificent Mile Shopping Festival presented by Mastercard.

"Fashion's Night Out has really become a fun celebration of fall fashion and shopping," said Erica Strama, festival chair and senior manager of marketing for The Shops at North Bridge.

The event was started four years ago by Vogue's editor-in-chief Anna Wintour to encourage shopping during the recession. "It's turned into this global affair from L.A. to New York and Chicago and globally everybody is celebrating on this one night," Strama said.

With more than 70 events in Chicago, here are a dozen spots to check out the latest fall looks, shop, primp and, of course, socialize. A complete listing can be found here.

>> Blowtique, 1 E. Huron St.

A girl's gotta look good, right? Stop by the salon for complimentary blow-outs from noon to 5 p.m. No appointments will be taken. It's on a first-come, first-serve basis. After 5 p.m., the standard pricing of $35 for a blow-out will go back into effect and the salon will extend its hours until 10 p.m.

>> Pioneer Court, 401 N. Michigan Ave.

Need to freshen up before tonight's main events? Ulta beauty experts will be showing off the latest products and doing touch ups for free from 3-6 p.m. only to MasterCard holders. 

>> Water Tower Place, 835 N. Michigan Ave.

Worldly travelers can get a free fashion passport and a glimpse of the runway looks found in London, Milan and Paris. From 6 to 8 p.m., guests can pass through London on Level 2, stop in Milan on Level 4, check out Paris on Level 6, and go back home to the U.S. on Level 7. They also can enter to win a $500 Water Tower Place. Admission is free but space is limited. Tickets must be reserved online in advance here. At Macy's, nibble on treats from Sweet Margy Toffee Confections and check out the Beauty on Call Lash and Braid Bars. A must-see is nail artist AstroWifey. 

 >> Macy's on State Street, 111 N. State St.

"Real Housewives" fans can spot New York's Aviva Drescher from 7 to 8 p.m. Nzimiro Optua of NBC's "Fashion Star" will give the scoop at 6 p.m. on fall fashion trends. Six designers of the Chicago Fashion Incubator will be there as well for a trunk show. Check out Kiva's PureBeauty nail bar and a culinary demo from Macy's executive chef Brad Saylor and sample wine and craft beer from Louis Glunz Wine & Beer.

>> The Shops at Northbridge, 520 N. Michigan Ave.

Get the first look for fall fashion (lace, leather and burgundy hues) when live models show off the latest trends put together by stylists and fashion bloggers in a friendly fashion competition. Shoppers will be able to vote for the best look displayed on the first floor from 6-8 p.m. Prizes including a designer handbag from Nordstrom, a shopping spree from Stuart Weitzman and a weeklong test drive from Cadillac will be awarded. Complimentary food and non-alcoholic beverages will be available.

>> 900 North Michigan Shops, 900 N. Michigan Ave.

Actress Ali Larter hosts a 7 p.m. fall fashion runway show with models dressed by local stylist Eric Himel. A beauty bazaar offers complimentary services from Mario Tricoci, such as mini manicures, massages, and hair styling.

>> Forever 21, 540 N. Michigan Ave.

Listen to a DJ spinning and the first 300 shoppers to spend at least $40 get a Love & Beauty set inspired by the fall lookbook.

>> Magnolia Bakery, 108 N. State St.

Need to satisfy your sweet tooth while shopping? There's a special FNO Cupcake made of chocolate cake, topped with vanilla buttercream, red velvet cupcake crumbles and a dash of sparkle. It is sold for $3.50, and $1 from each sale will go to benefit Dress for Success Chicago.

>> The Underground, 56 W. Illinois St.

The Chicago Fashion Foundation has partnered with marketing agency Londonberry Fashion Group to present a runway show featuring two local Chicago designers and a boutique, as well as free drinks and appetizers. 10 p.m. to midnight.

>> H&M, 22 N. State St., 840 N. Michigan Ave.

Enter to win a pass to a VIP event and private performance by Lana Del Rey.

>> TopShop, 830 N. Michigan Ave.

Fashion fanfare includes DJ performance, raffle , makeovers, nail art and gifts.

>> Neiman Marcus, 737 N. Michigan Ave.

Think you got what it takes to be a top model? Go on and strut your stuff in front of agents from Factor Women modeling agency. They're hosting a model search from 6 to 8 p.m. A fashion show at 7-8 p.m. will be hosted by Corri McFadden of VH1's "House of Consignment."

Chicago Tribune contributed.

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