Your 5 Step Plan to Surviving Fashion Week
Ready, set, slay! Yip, Fashion Week will shortly be upon us. The who’s who of South African fashion will be bustling in for runway shows from some of the biggest names in our fashion industry. But, before we get to see what we will be wearing for Autumn/Winter 2016, I thought I would do a round up among friends in the industry for their advice on surviving Fashion Week.
Hectic. So herewith, my Fashion Week Survival Plan. Take heed — then go and check out the clothes!
This could make or break your Fashion Week experience. Devices are known to die quite quickly, especially when you are on them all day. “I’m always the girl with the dead phone battery” shares stylist, blogger and all-round creative Sheena Bagshawe of The Stylists Notebook, “so I make sure my power bank and phone charger are with me or I’m done for!”
Take along battery chargers, two or three really good ones, to ensure you lead the social media pack. Remember the “Fees Must Fall” protest by models at SA Fashion Week last year? You want to be telling the story, not retweeting it once you are back on line.
Dehydration is a serious business! “The lights can turn the venue into a sauna by the time the second show starts” says one of Joburg’s Trend Men, Alan Foley.
Keeping yourself hydrated is important so always carry a bottle of water with you. Alan continues by highlighting the importance of eating before you arrive “The night can be a long and gruelling one, with very little time between shows”. Plan, plan, plan fashionistas!
Fashion Week is an opportunity to meet people from the industry and like-minded creatives. Swopping social media handles isn’t a substitute for business cards. Get your cards ready, do your homework on who’s who and who you should speak to and start talking business.
Good, solid preparation will stand you in good stead. “There is nothing quite as unfortunate as possibly meeting someone who just does not know their story” shares styling sensation and blogger Mahlatse James of MJ And Stuff, as he continues “A little bit of research goes a long way and benefits the unavoidable chit-chats in-between shows.”
This has been a little trick of mine for years, the good old pair of trusty sunglasses! My method of securing a little privacy in a hectically busy space, a pair of sunglasses also allows me to people watch with a clear conscience!
Fashion Week is the one time you may just be able to pull off sunglasses at night, like in the front row, Anna Wintour-style. Their usefulness increases from a Fashion Week point of view so that when you’re not into what’s on the runway, no one need know your state of mind. There are going to be aspects of some shows that you’re not impressed with. Solution sorted and everyone’s happy!
Fashion Week is a time of expression, by designers and Fashion Week goers alike. During this time it’s all too easy to lose your sense of individuality amongst a sea of on-trend style; my last Surviving Fashion Week tip is the most important.
“During Fashion Week I wear what truly inspires me” shares Candice De Carvalho, PR Account Director and co-founder of Phatic Communications. “Usually that’s with pieces that tell a story – a vintage find picked up overseas; a family heirloom that I’ve restored; a pair of shoes that remind me of an amazing moment in my own life. It’s this private dialogue that I have, by wearing pieces with history, that keeps me true to myself. In this industry, authenticity is the most important fashion statement I want to make.”
So, now that you are armed with insight into Fashion Week from those in the know, go out there and put your stamp on proceedings. In the words of one of the fashion greats, Gianna Versace
“Don’t be into trends. Don’t make fashion own you, but you decide what you are, what you want to express by the way you dress and the way you live.”