On the last day of London Fashion Week Matthew came rushing over to my hotel in the morning to tell me he had just been sent the most incredible dress from Cypress. He didn't even have to ask if I wanted to wear it because I immediately pulled it over my head and started cooing about how much I loved it. The vibrant colours, mis-matched stripes, oversized shape, details at the wrists... I felt so snuggly and cozy all day but still like a million bucks. I never wear bright colour like this and I absolutely loved it. This dress has snuck its way to the top of my wish list... wearing it once just wasn't enough.
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On being a blogger at fashion week...
Fashion week has come to an end but I've still got lots I want to show you from the week. Just a couple shows but mostly street style and the general atmosphere. Theres been a bit of a kerfuffle going on about the experience of being a blogger at fashion week this season... this is my experience and thoughts on it:
People are saying this season was different then past ones and that bloggers weren't treated the same. It's true. We were treated differently. Registration for fashion week opens months before the shows, normally you'll be sent a fast-track code beforehand so that you don't have to wait in line on the day. This season I didn't get a confirmation. When I went to register on the first day I discovered there was a separate line for bloggers - making three categories: buyers, press, and bloggers. When I got to the front of the queue there was a girl sitting behind a computer. She asked the name of my blog. I told her and passed over a card so that it would be easier to find. I stood there while she looked it over... wondering what she was thinking. There was a long line of people behind me. She looked up and asked what my stats were. I leaned in and told her, feeling slightly embarrassed to be saying with a bunch of people right behind me. It's not that I mind telling the BFC what they are, it was more that I wasn't expecting to be asked. Plus, is there a certain number that qualifies you as being 'big' enough?' How many twitter followers do you have?' - she asked next. So I answered. 'Have you been to fashion week before?' She eventually reached the conclusion that she 'liked it' so she printed me a pass. Before which she explained that, 'it was horrible to say, but a lot of bloggers are actually blaggers.'
Fair enough. I get it. I never expected to be considered press or to be waved into fashion shows. I don't expect it to be easy. I'm a fashion outsider and, to be honest, I feel privileged whenever I get the chance to go to a show. It just seemed like a last minute decision to have the process work the way it did. Maybe in the future the pre-registration form could be a bit more dynamic. Letting you explain what your blog is and why you want a pass. Yes, I'm a blogger but I'd rather like to think I'm not just a blogger. I also write for Yahoo's fashion channel and consult with brands/designers. But there isn't space on the form to distinguish the multifaceted nature of being a blogger.
All this has left the question of why I even want access to fashion week spinning in my head. Is it to sit on the front row? To get photographed in the courtyard looking fierce? To drink free Vitamin Water then get my hair and makeup done in the press tent? No. I love attending fashion week because I love the inspiration that comes from it. For me the six days at London Fashion Week are like a euphoric fashion induced mind-coma. I love attending shows, even if it means I'm standing in the back row. Sure, a seated ticket is better than standing - but only because it guarantees you entry first and you aren't left standing in line for an hour only to then be turned away. I love that I've been able to build relationships with different designers and PRs - that I can show my take on the best parts of a collection and give exposure to designers that people might not know about. I love hanging around outside, watching the mania take place... seeing Anna Dello Russo and Kanye West strut by in all their hyper-reality fabulousness. I love getting to see my friends. There's loads of people that I adore together in one place who I rarely get to see - getting to meet people who I follow on Twitter for the first time and discovering they're just as brilliant in more than 140 characters.
Yes, the relationship the fashion world has with bloggers is still having its kinks worked out - that was clearly evident in London this season. But it's a small kink in the great scheme of things and one I'm willing and going to ride out.