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'Regular' Guys Get to Be Models for a Day at Fashion Week

By Janet Upadhye | September 13, 2012 5:13pm

NEW YORK CITY — The runways at New York Fashion Week aren’t just for professional models anymore.

Richard Smith, designer for London-based men's clothing company Bespoke, shunned models in favor of a crew of ten "real world" guys to show that regular people can strut their stuff as well. 

Still, he enlisted a group of supercharged men who are all movers and shakers in the business world, his target demographic — including Peter Shankman, a CEO and entrepreneur based in New York City, Sergio A. Fernández de Córdova, Founder of Fuel Outdoor, Oren Alexander, Real Estate Agent and Ryan Serhant, break out star of Bravo’s Million Dollar Listing

"These were real guys of all different heights, sizes, weights and builds," said Alyson Roy, spokeswoman for Nolcha Fashion Week. "They are all everyday men, but they do look after themselves and take pride in their health and their appearance."

Although the men chosen were generally in good shape and had boyish good looks, the men said walking the catwalk was a humbling experience.

“I am used to people judging me on what I have to say and not on my looks alone,” Shankman said.

“I was focused on not tripping and falling off the runway. We all had the nerves of junior high schooler waiting backstage for our turn to walk out.”

But in the end Shankman said he put one foot in front of the other and put on a show. 

According to Roy, he and the others pulled it off.

"Some attendees didn't actually realize they weren't true models," she said. "They all did fantastic."

And the best part of being a real guy who gets to play runway model for a day?

“We get to keep the suits,” said Shankman.