10 THINGS NO ONE EVER TOLD ME ABOUT FASHION WEEK
Fashion week just wrapped up and this was one of my busiest, but definitely most exciting week yet. I’ve been getting a ton of questions and people seeking advice about going to fashion week so I wanted to share 10 things no one ever told me about fashion week for those who may be considering going next season!
It’s not all glitz and glam, it’s actually pretty exhausting. It’s a ton of waiting in line, standing in the freezing cold or sitting squished on a back row bench with peoples heads in front of you. Also, Shows aren’t in the same place so its a ton of running around from show to show. It might be a bit more glamorous if you’re Kim Kardashian or Eva Chen, but for us everyday folk it takes a lot of time and uber rides from show to show, which get pretty exhausting.
2. It takes a lot of time + work to get invited, and even then you’re not going to be at the big name shows. Invites don’t just appear unless your a somebody, so there’s a ton of research, emails and follow ups that go into securing invites to shows, and even those invites are most likely going to be standing, and at smaller shows. You’re definitely not going to be at Cristian Cowan or Coach unless you have connections.
3. The work doesn’t stop once you get your ticket. Theres a ton of scheduling/planning, outfit pulling, brand pitching and relationship building throughout the entire week. Networking is HUGE and you never know who you might meet throughout the week so be prepared to build relationships (and follow up).
4. It can feel like you’re back in school again. you see the same people at every show so you begin to recognize and really feel like you know people throughout the week.you’ll also notice the blogger cliques and “cool kids”. When you’re attending fashion week for the first time it can definitely feel like you’re the new kid at school since if you don’t know anyone
5.Your feet will hurt. I worked in retail, and somehow I totally forgot how bad your feet and lower back hurt after standing in line and sitting on an uncomfortable bench peering over the heads in front of you for hours on end. Don’t wear super uncomfortable heels. Wear flats or opt for a chunky heel. Better yet, wear sneakers and Get insoles.
6. Portable Phone Chargers are a must. I can’t even tell you how many times my phone has almost died during a show. I carry a charger and a portable battery and go through both several times in the course of a day.
7. It’s work. Fashion Week is a hustle. You get up early to get ready and get outfit shots (especially if you have brand sponsors) plan around traffic to get to shows on time, keep track of multiple tickets, show times and locations, take crowded trains or overpriced ubers to get to the venues (unfortunately lexus does not give just anyone who attends a free ride all week like you see the bigger bloggers sharing on insta). It’s a ton of long days (shows start at 9am and run on the top of the hour until 9pm and after parties go even later) so a lot of times its skipping meals to make shows and coming home exhausted to stuff your face with carbs.
8. Shows never start on time. No matter how hard you rush to get there on time, you will most definitely be waiting at least 15 minutes, usually closer to thirty minutes. That does not mean you can show up late however. If you’re standing, the line usually fills up pretty quick and you want to make sure you’re in the front half of it in case it’s super crowded and they don’t let all of standing in. If you’re lucky enough and have a seat, you can get there a little bit later but I definitely don’t recommend getting there later than the starting time because once they let standing in, a lot of times your seat WILL get taken and they will not help you fight for it.
9. Not all show are created equal. Some shows and presentations will be the most gorgeous, professional-run works of art you’ve ever seen (lookin’ atchu Alice + Olivia and the blonds). Others, not so much. Unfortunately, especially with smaller and more undersicvoered designers, there might be a good way of predicting this ahead of time.
10. Don’t overbook yourself. Fashion week is exhausting. I went SO HARD trying to fill my schedule my first couple seasons, thinking that going balls to the walls would be smart and oh so wavy…wrong. It was just exhausting and I’m lucky I didn’t burn myself out completely. While I had my pick in term of what shows to go to versus not, a lot of times I wouldn’t skip because I didn’t want a bad rep with the pr agency so it was just downright exhausting.
My best advice: give yourself ~2 hour block for things, that way travel time is built into your schedule. I keep a spreadsheet and update my google calendar for the week with events, meetings, shows and parties in one or two hour time blocks depending on location and my schedule for rest of the day. Remember what i said about shows starting a half an hour late????? Yeah, one hour time blocks are not enough time to get in, do the thing, get out, find your Uber and get to the next show in time (especially if you need to get int he standing line).
Have you been to fashion week before? Is there something you wish you would have known that I didn’t cover? Comment below and let me know, I’d love to hear about your experiences!