fashion week is the flirtation of clothes with buyers and press
Fashion week is when it becomes crystal clear to you that it is impossible to write properly about collections based on photos. The flirtation takes place on the runway, not through the screen. However, often not even a front row seat will ensure you will be able to see and take in every detail on the garment (this is especially true for haute couture, which is built upon exquisite craftsmanship). I think the ideal way to experience a collection is this: first, you go to the show to see the clothes on models, in motion, to discover how the garments behave. After a day or two, you go to the showroom to take in the details and see how the garments are made (the runway is always about the bigger picture). Buyers work this way, as well as editors and (some) fashion journalists.
Last week I saw a Maison Martin Margiela dress, the defining aspect of which was the sound of velcro straps holding the skirt together being pulled apart. If I saw a photo of the dress, I wouldn't give it a second thought nor realize that due to adjustable velcro straps you can wear the dress in countless ways. It's not just individual garments: many times I've attended a show and the official photos released afterwards didn't look nearly as dashing as the runway. Though photos make clothes immortal, they often don't convey all their magic.
In the deluge of fashion visuals available online, I feel that I'm slowly becoming immune to beauty. What I'd rip out of a magazine in some past life to store in a plastic "inspiration" folder, mesmerized by colors, composition and garments, is now just another photo among the hundreds I scroll through on my Tumblr dashboard (it's most likely uncredited too, so I don't even know who took it).
Girls don't rip out magazine pages any more. They make inspiration posts on their blogs.
"You're very beautiful, I think you should dress more relaxed."
The white silk collared shirt inspires me because I finally trust myself that I wouldn't stain or otherwise destroy it upon first wearing. Let's see if an appropriate one finds me in the near future.
I like to think these two photos were taken at fashion week. They're a close representation of my own imaginary glamorous fashion week attire; "imaginary" because I'm there to work, not look pretty. Fashion week is the best occasion to look pretty though, and if you're into looking pretty, you should really save the best of it for fashion week.
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1. If you're in town during fashion week, you won't escape fashion week. Bumping into masses of people coming from shows is practically unavoidable no matter where you are. I promise this will happen to you even if you're not interested in fashion week and try to stay away from it as much as possible.
2. Some people dress eccentrically and hang around the shows to get noticed (without actually going to shows). It makes for a pretty awkward situation when they look at you and your camera because they want you to take their photo and it's so obvious. The Sartorialist and Jak & Jil phenomenon gone bizarre, I guess.
3. Every part of your body will feel the consequences of bringing heavy photo equipment to shows. This is why nobody ever does it (except me). By the way, my left shoulder is still bruised.
4. Taking a taxi is not the quickest way to get from one show to another. It might actually be the slowest. This is because the VIPs are taking taxis/chauffeured cars and they're all going in the same direction - the next show. The streets clog up in a matter of seconds. Taking the metro seems to be the best option in Milan (especially because Milan traffic is insane even without jams - it's best to skip it altogether).
Me outside the Emporio Armani Fall/Winter 2011/2012 show