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Friends of Racked Share the Biggest Surprises of 2012

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As 2012 draws to a close, we're surveying our friends in the fashion industry about the year's biggest news stories and most exciting developments. So far, we've looked at the best and worst trends, and favorite purchases from insiders; now, let's discuss he biggest surprises of the year. Readers, let us know what you think in the comments.

Please, let's not interrupt Sarah Jessica Parker while she's acting. Thanks.

April Francis, fashion stylist: Dark Matter's 2PACas, best coffee ever. Sarah Jessica Parker on Glee = sheer fashion brilliance. HELLO! Let's have a kiki.
Sissy Spastik, performer: Obama won? I'm happy with that.
D. Graham Kostic, creative director of Glossed & Found: Nicholas Ghesquiere leaving Balenciaga & turtlenecks making a comeback this fall. Both baffled me.

Brigid Sweeney, retail reporter at Crain's Chicago Business: Um, Judy Maxwell, the fun little home shop and art gallery on State Street in the Gold Coast, is run by Joan Cusack! I'm sorry; did I blow her cover? Or maybe that's already super-old news? I don't know. But the store is so charming and her website (where she uses her married last name) is hilarious, so everyone should check it out.
Lynn Okura Bey, editor of Sales Check at Chicago Magazine: I was shocked/sad to see Betsey Johnson stores shutter. She's still a rockstar.
Amalie Drury, editor of Pure Wow: I was surprised and sad when Post 27 closed so soon after moving into its new space on Grand Avenue.
Suzanne Kopulos, editor and style director of Garmental: A lot of boutiques managed to keep their doors open, even in this terrible economic time. More surprising is that new businesses are opening, which is a great sign for 2013!
Emma Arnold, creator of Tres Awesome: That so far, I have not had to break out the fur to go out shooting. Love me some global warming.
Eric Himel, fashion stylist: Nicolas Ghesquière leaving Balenciaga.
Bridget Halanski, director of runway at Factor Women: I loved the Neiman Marcus and Target collaboration for the holidays—being in the industry, I heard rumors it was coming, but it was fun to see what pieces the designers would do! And they made perfect Christmas Gifts!