Okay, we need to get a handle on this to avoid mass tag confusion or worse, over-tagging. Is it #nyfw #mbfw #mbfwny? And what about the designers shows? Who decides on the tagging system. This needs to decided upon and when it is, please drop us a line so we can avoid tag confusion going forward. And maybe a moderator for the fashion month would not go amiss too. Lol.
2. Time is money.
Don’t waste mine and I won’t waste yours. Shows are never on time, but people please if you are attending a show, just take your seats upon getting to the venue, sit down and others will follow suit that way the shows can run semi on time and we can all go home and eat dinner. Because in the very famous and very smart words of Aliza Licht aka DKNY PR GIRL, “being fashionably late is not fashionable.” Yes we know shows are notorious for running late, and we have come to expect it but it still does not make it cool to keep people waiting, its rather rude.
3. The Font Row.
Who sits on the front row and why? It shouldn’t be the case, but the success of a designer’s show is sometimes based on the roll call of their front row. This season we had the soon-to-be-designer-olympic-hero-soon-to-be-Reality-TV-personality, God help us all, to the ex-sex-tape-turned-Reality TV-personality with the musician-wannabe-designer boyfriend, sitting front row and lets’ not talk about the other famous faces and their posses. But here’s the thing, all this fanfare takes away from the actual reason we are watching in the first place; the clothes, the designer. We didn’t talk much about certain collections because all we could talk about were the front row attendees, which in a sense, is #fashionfail. Designers don’t pour tears, sweat and in some cases blood, into producing a collection only to be overshadowed by some reality TV starlet. For one moment at least, let’s turn the spotlight on the real stars because I guaranteE! there will be plenty other opportunities to keep up. In this age of Livestream, the importance of fashion shows and subsequently, the front rows, have been questioned. However, whilst it still remains relevant, lets put substance over popularity contest.
4. Respect yourself.
PR people are human too, a thing that is sometimes forgotten during fashion week, although some PRs don’t help themselves, still, we are all human. Fashion Week has been known to bring out the worst kind of Kray in people; Marie Jose Sousskind- Jalou, influential publisher of L’Officiel and Jalouse, lost her seat at the Zac Posen show along with several others in the wake of a fire regulation which saw 60 seats removed 30 minutes to the show. Not funny for fashion folk who had to wait around to be seated but also off the richter scale stressful for the house PR. There was some altercation with the Posen PR Posse and in the process Jennifer Eymere, daughter of Jalou, who accompanied her mother to the show, slapped PR Lynn Tesoro because she was being fresh with her mother and you know, you “don’t f&$k with with French people” in Eymere’s words. In fairness to her, she did warn Tesoro of what she would get coming to her if she did not address her attitude with her mother. Still, such attitude is never, ever acceptable and some people (ahem) might not be so cool in that kind of situation. Bottom-line; you are not an animal so there is no reason to act like one even if your hand is being forced there is such a thing called; dignity.
There were reports of a kerfuffle at Saint Laurent, where PR people were condescending to the show attendees, journalists especially, giving them seats in siberia whilst the “cool kids” who really wouldn’t have anything critical or beneficial to say about the show, sat front row with their bff’s. Whilst this is not the biggest of deals, there’s such a saying; don’t bite the hand that feeds you. Journalists may not feed you directly, but they influence the hand that does. Being nice wouldn’t cost you the earth it would only gain you more respect in turn, which, especially in the Fashion Industry, is priceless.
5. Fashion outside of fashion;
Street style had become a thing, a really big thing especially during fashion week, sometimes it overshadows the whole show; what one is wearing. And in the name of street-style, it has become the norm that people throw on everything and anything, never mind that it can look crazy, schlep to shows in hopes of being photographed by Bill or Scott, papped by the mob photogs and bloggers outside the shows. The crazier the better. At a show during London Fashion Week a few seasons ago, there was a guy in bedroom slippers and silk pyjama bottoms with one leg rolled up. I guess he was going for that LLCoolJ meets Hugh Hefner look, but even for London where cooky and quirk are the rule of thumb, it was not cute. Here’s a tip; there is nothing wrong with looking normal and here’s another; we are not there to see you anyway, so it’s really acceptable to dress like a normal person to the shows. Matter of fact we encourage it.
6. Mean Girls;
It was high school all over again, the war between the plastics and anti-plastics reared its fugly head, with the back and forth sparring and open letters flying between designers and journalists. There was Oscar v Cathy which drew in Lady Gaga, and then there was the whole Hedi series;
part 1; Hedi Slimane did not want Cathy Horyn to be at his show so he did not invite her because she likes Raf Simons more than she likes him so she can, in his words, “get a 2 for 1 special at Dior” but will never get a single at his show.
part 2; Hedi Slimane did not want to talk to press after the show because its his party and he’ll cry if he wants to.
Part 3. Hedi Slimane and his PR people don’t really dig the whole freedom of press thing and they like to send out emails to journalists asking them to take down or re-word articles and tweets they deem contrary, as they displayed in these ridiculous requests to BOF, otherwise they didn’t get invited to his show. Matter of fact, anyone who was remotely critical about Hedil Slimane and his Saint Laurent peeps were persona non-grata. I wonder what would happen if no one ever wrote a word about his show?
So, Hedi Slimane was basically the Regina George of the season.
The proof is in their name and their duty is to critically dissect a collection, to offer an objective view, not to throw praises at the designer in gratitude for their front row seats. Expecting a critic to stay schtum is unfathomable; they will always have something to say. The relationship between critics and designers is laced with a double edged sword. Critics should remember that words cut deep and are rarely forgotten. Even if they are true, designers are still only human, the most emotional types sometimes, for all their creative genius their egos are as fragile as egg shells. Yes, be critical but, soften the blow. Designers, man up. Critics are just doing their jobs, its nothing personal, or maybe it is, take it on the chin, no sweat off your back. It’s how you handle yourself in light of such criticism that speaks to your true character. At least you are being written about, what if no one ever wrote about you? You know what they say about fashion, there are a million other people out there who would kill to walk in your shoes, a million people who wouldn’t mind two words from the Cathy Horyns, Robin Givhans, Tim Blanks…of the world on their collection even if it is critical.
8. Things change yet they stay the same;
The seasons and trends may change but in some ways some things remain the same.
New York felt like a marathon, literally all 26 miles of it, there were too many shows and emotions ran high, it was chaotic sometimes and this culminated in a certain lack of intimacy.
London, whilst it had its share of breathtaking moments, Temperley, Van der Ham, Burberry etc, at times it still felt childish. London’s somewhat cavalier attitude towards fashion whilst cool, can be detrimental to its global image. Fashion is first and foremost a business, a multi billion pound industry and one of the highest employers in the UK therefore it should be taken seriously in that context. Some of the collections on the London scene were still much too quirky, it didn’t translate off the runway even when you took it apart…there was a straight-jacket like get up and something that looked like a sandwich…I rest my case.
Milan, drama in Milano, there was the smack down between the masters; Armani and Cavalli, who is the Commander-In-Chief and who is the second in command? Maybe there should be an election to decide before it escalates into a full blown war between two hip old men. And there was the whole Dolce & Gabbana mess…ignorance is not bliss.
This season, like last season and the season before that, the award for the most dramatic city goes to Paris. We’ll call this #ParisianPalava. If it isn’t spawns of French Editors slapping people across the continent, its designers throwing tantrums declaring war on fashion journalists and confusing the world at large.
No changes there then.
Sometimes its easy to get confused as to what season is being shown, not least because just as spring is blossoming we are seeing clothes for Autumn and as Autumn is breaking we are put back in the summer mood that never was. The problem here is the clothes designers are suggesting we invest in for the coming season; leather in summer? Or more maddeningly, Fur? Its a tad confusing isn’t it?
10. At the end of the day,
Its only clothes, shoes and bags. Fashion is not rocket science, its not solving World Hunger or bringing about World Peace…we often say this but fail to remember it when push comes to shove. When the clothes have been worn, the runways walked, the make up cleaned off, the flash bulbs gone off, the street style people returned to dressing normal, the weaves have come off; LIFE GOES ON. Just like it did before and during the shows. The world does not stand still for fashion. Trends come and go, seasons change, designers quit and move on, fashion houses will always have good and bad seasons, its the way of the world. Like in Cinderella’s fairytale when the carriage turns back into a pumpkin, reality sets it and there you have it.
Let’s not lose sight of that.
So until next season, let’s peace this thing out and hope for a more peaceful AW13 come February.