What I learned from my first NYFW
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I can't believe it has already been one week, since I got back from my first NYFW! If you didn't know, Fashion Month kicks off with New York Fashion Week and ends with Paris Fashion Week. If you missed NYFW, so you can always try and make it for fashion week in another place;)
New York Fashion Week: September 7-14
London Fashion Week: September 15-19
Milan Fashion Week: September 20-26
Paris Fashion Week: September 26-October 3
There are other "fashion weeks", but these 4 are the biggest! Anyway, this was my first one and although I have been to New York before and done "fashiony" things, I have never experienced anything like New York Fashion Week! I thought I came prepared, buuuuut I mean it's always good to learn things! So here's what I've got for ya, that hopefully helps your next NYFW.
1) Plan early. I really didn't have an issue with this. I put my flight choices in Hopper and just sat back and let them do the work/tell me when to buy my tickets! As far as hotels, I researched ones that weref near shows and such. You just have to be on top of it regarding this, because NYFW is usually busy and follows labor day weekend, which is busy as well. I didn't want to super pack my schedule, because it was my first time to NYFW AND it was Nick's first time in NYC ever, so I wanted to be able to spend it with him. I was on time regarding reaching out to shows in July, but I followed up too late -I should have followed up again in August, and then again the week of, which I did. New York Fashion Week is kind of stressful, because things are so last minute. You can even get show invites the day before!! Side note- I got most of my contacts from Modem. Also, most shows are put on through PR agencies. If you can get on their list/have at least one contact there, you should be good!
2) All shoes will give you blisters eventually. I thought I had "comfy" shoes, but with the amount of walking that is done, it's really important to wear shoes that are generally good for your feet and won't give you blisters. Carrying a pair of flats is always a good idea, but even they can rub blisters...I think what's better is fashion sneakers, that you can get away with wearing all day long!
3) Backpacks are cool. So, the backpack trend has been out there for a couple of years now. I have been against it, just because I think that's weird...during my middle school and high school days, backpacks were NOT cool. The one shoulder was all the rage and unfortunately, that's horrible for your back. The bag I used for fashion week was the Cuyana Oversized Carryall Tote and it was perfect! It fit everything I could have needed and more, but I wish I had the Cuyana Leather Backpack, but it would have distributed the weight of my stuff so much easier! Totally chic and comfortable!
4) Take the Subway when you can. The subway gets a bad rap, but it's the cheapest and most economical option! You can buy an 7 day unlimited ride metro card for only $30ish! Another option is UberPool (same as Lyft Line), which is cheaper than the normal ridesharing rate, as you have other passengers, who have a drop-off on the way to your destination, which cuts the price. You just have to be aware of time, as lot of NYFW things are back to back. If you are nervous about trying to use the subway, both Apple and Google maps have subway routes and they tell you exactly what to do! Might I also recommend that you don't wear heels on the subway...at least not the spiky ones! We took uber for most of the first and second day, but then took the subway towards the end of the second day and didn't look back! Plus you can use the saved money for things like late night pizza snacks ;)
5) Stay in the area. I'll do a separate post on this, but we stayed at The Frederick Hotel! A vast majority of the shows are at Skylight Clarkson, so try and find a hotel that is closer to that! The Frederick Hotel was only a 5 minute uber, 11 minute subway ride, or 20 minute walk. Not all shows are here, but to stay in the TriBeCa / Lower Manhattan area is perfect. You might be able to score a cheaper rate elsewhere, but you'll make up for that in extra time and money spent getting places.
6) Be yourself. This might sound bad, but I was super intimidated on what to wear to NYFW...some people dress up like it is halloween or something, no lie! I was worried that my outfits weren't "cool" enough...I used fashion week to stretch myself and maybe go a little out of my comfort zone, but still wearable clothing. People have trouble grasping clothing during fashion week, so I tried to remain relatable, but still inspirational. I hope you liked my looks!
7) You don't need your DSLR. People told me this, but I didn't really listen, so it just weighed my bag down! iPhone pics are the queen of fashion shows anyway, but I do know some people who bring smaller, wifi cameras and love shooting with them. A lot of people hire a photographer to shoot them, so you wouldn't need it for looks, anyway!
8) Don't say yes to everything. I read somewhere to say yes to everything, but I really don' recommend that. First see if it is something that you actually want to go to, then see how it looks with your schedule. There were things I got invited to that I actually turned down, because it just didn't fit me or my brand. I would suggest saying yes to things if they fit your brand, but remember to go back and say you can't attend if it turns out something else is more important for you to go to. You wouldn't want someone to say yes to your party, then not show up...
9) Plot out Everything. A lot of shows are on GPS Radar, which keeps track of all of your RSVPS and tickets, but that's really only for shows at Skylight Clarkson. It is still best practice to calendar everything and make sure you know best routs to get there and how much time you have. Generally speaking you need to arrive early for shows, because just because you have a ticket, doesn't mean that you are getting in. I messed this up at the Banana Republic x Olivia Palermo Presentation, because I thought I could get in anytime, but also I didn't realize there was a media entrance. I got in as soon as the models were wrapping. So sad, but I learned from it! This even was open to the public, so I just mistook which line I was supposed to get in. Oh well! For Skylight Clarkson, I arrived at 8:30 for a 9:00 show. I arrived, waited in a line to be directed the the gallery I was supposed to be in, then waited in another line to have my ticket scanned, then waited in another line for the actual show! The show started at 9:30 (not unusual for shows to start half an hour late), and was over by 9:45. It's a lot of hurry up and wait!
10) Pics first! I shot all of my looks, including this one, on the day we arrived. I can't believe I almost shot them the Sunday we were going to leave! This allowed me to 1) not look exhausted (was for sure tired from the 6:30 am flight though) 2) have content to share while I was there 3) not have to worry about shooting a look. David Coe Photo was awesome to shoot with and I will definitely use him again. If you are going as a blogger or influencer, I highly suggest getting your shoots out of the way first. I know some people who have the photographers come with them, but honestly my hair and make up would not have been as on point and my tiredness would have shown through. But hey, maybe that's why so many people shoot with sunglasses! Side note -we shot close to our hotel, so I was able to change for most things in my room. I did have to change once in McDonald's, but it was fine. Keep in mind that there are not a ton of public restrooms and often times people won't let you use theirs, unless you're a paying customer.
11) Pack snacks. Hydrate obviously, but make sure you are fueled too. A lot of brand meetings and such will have food for you, but shows won't. Because of the nature of NYFW, you may or may not have time to eat; granola bars will be your best friend. Plan accordingly!
Have you been to NYFW before? Any tips I missed? Would love to add to my list!! If you have any questions that I didn't cover, don't hesitate to reach out!
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