So now that I’ve popped my Fashion Week cherry and unlocked another journalism achievement I’m going to write the thing I needed to read a week ago – A guide to Fashion Week by a newbie for other newbies.
- Get over your Impostor Syndrome. Arriving for the very first time is intimidating. Everyone breezes through the doors seemingly knowing exactly where to be and what to do. Don’t be afraid. Everyone here was in your exact position at some point. No one came out of their mother able to negotiate an extra pass for their photographer or knowing where the bathrooms are. The front desk has heard it all a billion times, so just ask for what you need.
- My boss booked me in for make up each morning which sounded equal parts fun but also kind of time consuming. Enjoy it! This is your moment of calm and your only opportunity to relax. Shout out to the ladies at Smashbox for being amazing. I miss you!
- You will be running flat tack up and down stairs from the media room to the shows and back again for hours. It will feel like an absolute eternity if you wear heels. I wore heels on Monday, by Monday evening I had learnt my lesson. Flats are friends.
- This is an awesome opportunity to network and make new contacts however it was pretty damn scary. To my surprise the people at the top of the social hierarchy were the friendliest. Colin Mathura-Jeffree chatted to me like I was an old friend despite not having the faintest idea who I was and make up guru KieKie Stanners made sure I left backstage with the information I needed. If you are greeted with a lukewarm reaction, try not to take it personally, politely excuse yourself and move on to the next person.
- Take your own camera, it will save your time and sanity. You don’t have to be an expert, God knows the only thing I know about ‘artistic composition’ is how to spell it. Finding photographs to go with your articles within a tight time frame can be tricky and stressful so find a place in the media pit and snap away. I took 1000 pictures in one day, about 25 were usable. Just be glad we’re no longer in the time of darkrooms and paper.
- The media pit is the knot of cameras the runway models walk towards. The general rule is TV cameras are set up in the middle, then the print and online media cluster around. It’s uncomfortable and kinda smells like an armpit but you’ll be far too busy getting shots to worry about that. You can also mostly avoid the queues if you’re a pit dweller, when you see them you’ll realise this is a huge bonus.
- The media room is your home, you live here now. Luckily there is a fridge of drinks and power points for chargers. People generally leave their set ups for the day which saves lugging around unbelievably heavy equipment. This room is a great resource, make sure you use it.
- The hours are insanely long so consider the following – Firstly bring plenty of snacks to keep you going. I accidentally experimented with trying to do a full day on just cans of energy drinks. I cannot stress enough what a bad idea that is. Secondly accept the fact your house will look like a shambles by Friday. Let it go or get a cleaner in, there’s no way on this earth you’re going to have the time or motivation to clean stuff. Thirdly, parking a reasonable walking distance from the viaduct is neither easy nor cheap. Managed to actually parallel park my giant people mover for the first time ever due to sheer desperation. Seven attempts and a $35 parking permit later and I was set for the day.
- Don’t arrange anything for at least 4 days after Fashion Week ends. You will need to rest and recover and will be no good to anyone. If anyone tries to make you do stuff, video yourself lying on your bedroom floor singing tunelessly along to your Best of the 90’s Album. They won’t ask again.