Front row center, we have Anna Wintour and (occasionally) her daughter Bee. For fashion observers they are the perfect duo because you get to see what the young and the more mature are wearing all in one picture. Anna seems to favor a more nuetral palette while Bee favors brighter colors. Both wear dresses, which are simple, elegant and sophisticated (left: Anna at Carolina Herrera, right: Anna + Bee at Zac Posen).
Apart from dresses, pretty blouses with dark skirts is also a good elegant and sophisticated combination. Anna (left at Bottega Veneta) wears it softly with a flowy skirt and nuetral colors, while Olivia Chantecaile (right at Carolina Herrera) wears it sharply with contrasting black and white colors and sharp pencil skirt.
Now we know where people wear those gorgeous gorgeous cocktail dresses we see on the runway- back at the runway! Mischa Barton looks smashing at Marc by Marc Jacobs (left) and Anna Sui (right).
It is always also a plus if you wear said fashion show's fashion at the fashion show. Witness Margherita Missoni at Zac Posen and Mischa at Marchesa.
For something more classic, I am loving Laura Bush's smart black blazer and jeans look at J Mendel (I saw a local celeb wear this look at the local YSL show and she looked fab- but remember to wear fabulous shoes to spice up the outfit!). Kate Bosworth also looked gorgeous in the classic LBD at Zac Posen.
Even simpler (especially for those on a budget) just wear a fabulous pair of jeans and a pretty top or jacket. Note Eleanor Ylvisaker (left) and Emilia Fanjul Pfeifler at Vera Wang. Their outfits are simple and casual, but still very stylish and appropriate for a fashion show.
Hope this helps. Better to be prepared than be caught unaware right? :D