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City Guide

Fashion Week First-Timers Guide

February 3, 2017 - 159 Comments

New York Fashion Week is just a few days away, so I’ve put together a guide to make sure your experience is as amazing as possible. If you aren’t headed to Fashion Week this season, don’t worry — I’m including ways for everyone to follow along!

If you can’t attend this year’s fashion week, stay updated with live streams here, and find photos from each show here. With tons of changes in creative direction this season, I’m especially excited to see new concepts from Calvin Klein, Oscar de la Renta, and Diane von Furstenberg!When you land, you want to be able to hit the ground running. Check into your hotel (my favorite places to stay are 11 Howard, The Ludlow, and NoMo SoHo), then organize your luggage to make getting ready easier. Spend some time planning out your day so you can make sure you get everything on your to-do list done! I try on my outfits before I even pack them so I know I’m not over-packing. Not only do you have to bring enough clothes to last you through the week, in the winter your clothes are bulkier and take up a lot of space. Since hotel closets are so small, one of my tips is to pack a clothing rack with you. I got one for like $40 on amazon that breaks down and is pretty portable so I can put it in my suitcase and set it up when I get there.  With less sleep and freezing temperatures, it’s important to take care of your skin so you can start each day with a fresh face. Before you go to bed, wash away all makeup and other impurities with the Laura Mercier Cleansing Oil or the Skin Inc. Cleansing Foam followed by a hydrating moisturizer to prevent dryness. I also try to do a sheet mask every night or every other night (try this avocado mask, or a hypoallergenic option!). I’m actually obsessed with snail masks! There’s also a great one by SK-II that’s super hydrating, but kind of expensive for a face mask. Then I continue with my normal beauty routine. The MOST essential part for me is to use an oil before I put on my makeup. Especially in the winter months when it’s so dry. You already know my favorite one is the Nourishing Rose Oil from Laura Mercier, but if you’re not into rose, I also love one from Grown AlchemistOf course, watching shows and presentations is a big part of Fashion Week, but street style is also huge part of what makes it so memorable. I’m always so inspired by what other people wear, and it’s also a great way to spot new trends, and give me the opportunity to support my favorite designers.. Keep up with my favorite street style photographers for major outfit inspo — Le 21eme, Tommy Ton, Shooting the Style, Street Peeper, and New York Times Fashion.In New York, it’s pretty common for shows to start 15-20 minutes late. It probably has a lot to do with the street style above. Although, one time I was at a show and it started 40 minutes late because a model fainted! Since it started so late I ended up missing the next one I was supposed to go to. That being said, you should still aim to be on time. I actually missed my first ever Chanel couture show because it began right on time and I couldn’t find the entrance! This leads me to my next point, which is fashion show etiquette. Showing up on time is number 1 of course, but there are a few more things you should keep in mind. Of course you want to take photos while you’re there, but so does everybody else. Make sure you aren’t sticking your arm out too far to get the shot. You could be blocking somebody else and I’m sure you wouldn’t like if someone did that to you. Also relating to photos, at the end of the runway is the photographers’ “pit.” This is where all the photographers from different publications stay so they can get great photos of the clothes from straight on. Most of the time, they will ask you to uncross your legs if you’re sitting in the front row. It’s because they don’t want your legs in the shot! Make sure you listen because they’ll keep yelling at you. Speaking of the front row–the seats are assigned. Sometimes you’ll get lucky and they’ll need people to fill in the front row, but please don’t try to fight someone for their seat. My first ever fashion show was Betsy Johnson in 2010 and I sat in the 6th row. I still had the most amazing time and I felt so lucky to even be there!
When you have some down time in-between shows, go explore and find inspiration (or find the perfect avocado toast)! For the perfect meal, go to Aunt Jakes for the BEST avocado toast with fried artichokes, Cafe Habana for some bomb Cuban-Mexican food, and Cafe Henrie for the ultimate Instgrammable vibes. Then check out spots like the Brooklyn Bridge, Top of the Rock, and High Line. I talked more about where to get great food in my last guide! Your off time is really important because it will allow you to de-stress, which makes the whole time more enjoyable. Don’t take this for granted! Unplug and unwind for a bit. Unbutton your pants if you have to.

Tips from Nicholas:

Hi guys! This is Nicholas. You may know me from Aimee’s recent YouTube video, or @cholpak on Instagram. Part of my job here at Song of Style is traveling to fashion week with Aimee to capture content and make sure everything runs as smooooooth as possible. My first fashion week was a total whirlwind. I think it went really well, but I’ll admit (Aimee don’t read this) I was pretty much winging it. I didn’t really have any experience to go off of! Now after a few seasons I know the ropes, and Aimee and I thought it would be a good idea if I gave you some tips in case you’re going to fashion week for the first time with someone else, or that’s what you hope to do one day.

First, CHARGE THE CAMERAS. And have extra batteries. You’re going to be using the camera all day and the battery will die quickly. Especially for me since I do a lot of videoing as well. Bring an external charger for your phone. Boost Case makes a great one that attaches to your phone so it’s not even something extra to carry.
Second, know the schedule. Getting to the shows on time is really important and you need to know how long it’s going to take to get from one venue to the next. A lot of times for Aimee a designer is dressing her specifically for the show and counting on her attendance so it’s pretty rude to miss it. Don’t let that be on you! That’s not smooth.
My third tip would be get as much sleep as possible in the week leading up to fashion week. It’s a lot of early mornings and late nights and it’s important to be as well rested as possible. One of the most fun parts of fashion week is the parties, but you have to know what time to go back and get some sleep for the next day. Aimee always tells me to have fun but I’m like “girl! I got stuff to do!!”

Okayyyyyy Nicholas, bye. Back to me you guys! I hope you liked this guide and if you’re going to fashion week I hope it helps you out! If you have any questions regarding fashion week, make sure to leave them in the comments below and I’ll answer them in my next post!


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