Shay Mitchell Can't Pick Just One Thing She Loves About Fashion Week

02/11/2013 at 03:00 PM ET

Shay Mitchell Fashion WeekZev Starr-Tambor/Greg Kessler

During a runway show, many front-row fashionistas are busy Instagramming, bragging about being at the show on Twitter or just wondering how the models can wear those heels all day without flinching. Shay Mitchell, on the other hand, is totally focused, absorbing the entire experience.

“I love seeing how they put the entire shows together,” Mitchell told PEOPLE at the DKNY show on Sunday from her front row seat next to PEOPLE StyleWatch’s editor Susan Kaufman. “Not just the clothes, but I love seeing what they do with the models’ makeup, and the nails!” She reveals that she even logs onto Pinterest post-show to get an even better look at the details.

And the Pretty Little Liars star is especially in awe of the designers who make fashion week such an amazing event, citing Donna Karan and Diane von Furstenberg as especially inspirational. “Their presence is so powerful,” she said. “When they [walk the] runway [to close their show], you know they are a force to be reckoned with.”

Mitchell, who told PEOPLE she “loves to get dressed up,” decided to ditch her preferred dresses and “switch it up a little bit” in honor of NYFW. For the DKNY show, she slipped into an off-the-runway printed skirt topped off with a leather jacket for a “pretty punk look.” She then did a quick change for DVF, taking a risk in pink tuxedo pants and a girly lipstick shade, noting, “I’m wearing a similar pink lip color as the models, so I fit right in!”

Mark your calendars to pick up the September issue of PEOPLE StyleWatch to find out more about Mitchell’s experience at Fashion Week, and in the meantime check out her Instagram. Tell us: What do you think of Mitchell’s NYFW style?

–Jennifer Cress, reporting by Kristen Maxwell

PHOTOS: SEE WHAT OTHER STARS SAT FRONT ROW AT NYFW!

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