Diary of a Fashion-Week Fanatic: Two Days, 17 Shows and One Serious Loss of Sanity

  • Share
  • Read Later

At any given moment during a fashion show, at least one-third of the crowd is snapping photos. Here, onlookers at Custo Barcelona's Fall/Winter 2012 show capture the collection with their smartphones.


9:30 a.m. – I wake up and still feel exhausted. Going for broke, I pick a pair of semi-comfortable 4-inch heels.

11:18 a.m. – Take my seat at Lela Rose. I’ve noticed a preponderance of children at Fashion Week this season. Are they being indoctrinated this early? Everyone I see has a familiar face. Is this because it’s the same group of people, or is it that everyone puts on the same stylish airs? I decide it’s a bit of both.

11:41 p.m. – I wonder if I will hear the beat of the bass in my sleep.

11:52 a.m. – A Mercedes-Benz photographer asks if he can take my picture next to one of the display cars. Initial flattery turns to awkwardness as I realize I don’t know how to pose stylishly, much less with a large prop like a car. Note to self: practice in front of a mirror before September Fashion Week.

2:12 p.m. – There is a star-studded front row at Tracy Reese, who shows lots of bright colors and cheery fabrics.

3:02 p.m. – I rush into the Joy Cioci presentation. There is a man in panda eye makeup, wearing a shirt with stuffed-animal pandas glued on. I will see him approximately eight more times today.

3:14 p.m. – While waiting in line for a seat assignment at Custo Barcelona, a pushy European man berates a p.r. rep who can’t find his name on the list: “I’ve covered Custo’s shows for the past four seasons. Custo adores me!” Everyone here is a superstar, if only in his or her own eyes.

3:27 p.m. – My eyes start to glaze over during the Custo show. Is he showing layered separates, or do I have double vision? Fashion, if not consumed in realistic doses, starts to blend together into one indistinguishable albeit colorful haze.

8:05 p.m. – I arrive at the Park Avenue Armory, a historic, theatrical venue in which Tommy Hilfiger will show his collection. In the building’s huge central vault, there are brick walls covered with vines, and small trees with fall flowers. It feels like we are outside in Paris, and Tommy’s equestrian-inspired collection re-energizes me.

(MORE: Five Questions with Tommy Hilfiger)

9:01 p.m. – I treat myself to a much-needed cocktail at the Tracy Reese after party in the Stone Rose Lounge. Filled with chic and stylish people, the party will go on into the wee hours, even if my own tired self will not. I feel a fashion hangover coming on.

What did I learn after 17 shows (and countless blisters)? The beat of fashion marches on incessantly. Don’t angle yourself head-on for the cameras. No one on a normal person’s salary, sadly, can afford most designer clothes. Oh, and always carry a spare pair of flats.

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. Next