Thursday, February 4, 2010

"Umm I'm a Friend of the Designer: How to Sneak into Fashion Week

There is a huge misconception that to rub elbows with the socialites and the better dressed of New York Fashion Week, you have to be somebody or know somebody. Nothing can be further from the truth. Getting into the Tents, meaning the Tent, the Promenade and the Salon (fashion week is held all over New York City, but the Tents, is probably the easiest place to get into, which is probably why they are moving Fashion Week to the Lincoln Center in the future....) without tickets or any credentials is not impossible with the right pair of pumps... (actually you don't even need those)

*Though this method has been tested and works, results are not typical and are based on a personal experience*

First it is important to realize nobody really wants to be at Fashion Week. Most of the participants there are editors who have to write up reviews for work which means longer hours at the office or skipped lunch breaks. If you're not some big time editor, you are an unpaid intern doing ALL the grunt work. So unless you're a celeb, nobody wants to be there. So with that in mind do NOT let your "geekedness" show when approaching the Tents. Secondly all the security that works at the Tents are independent security officers hired by Fern Mallis' people. They do not know fashion nor do they care.

First Step: Do your homework! Find out which show you are planning to go to ( schedule). Do not just show up at the Tents. If its a foreign name, learn how to pronounce it. This will come into play later.

The day of the show: I say dress dress like you work somewhere, like you coming from your office to write up a piece i.e. pumps, pumps, pumps!

Arrive at the Tents: Security will ask you " Ma'am, which show are you here to see". They are very professional. Without hesitating, you say the show- Nanette Lepore for example. And they'll let you in. Just like that. The reason behind this is; the fashion industry is the only industry where you can be a big name somebody whether be it a designer, editor, stylist, ect and still half of American will not know who you are. Who can really point out Jason Wu, Miuccia Prada, or Diane Von Furstenberg... unless your into fashion who knows who these people are. So security aren't going to go around asking everybody "and who are you" or "where's your ticket".  What if they accidentally turn they're nose up at Fern Mallis (who's Fern Mallis? Google her- unless your into fashion you would not know who Fern is, proving my point for most: Who are these people?!). They might end up asking someone really important what their business is at the Tents and offend them. So to be safe, security for the most part do not hassle anybody.

Ok your in the Tents! What does that mean? Nothing! the Tents house the fashion shows, but the shows are separate entities within the Tents. Now, realize being in the Tents is fun by itself. There's tons of freebies, a dozen flat screens with live stream of the shows going on, and the occasional B- list celebrity, not famous enough to get escorted through the back doors so they come through the front doors with their camera crews (Tori Spelling). But for those who've come this far to see your girl Anna here's the next step. Thirty minutes before your show (homework!), start looking around. Look for a couple chicks wearing all black and 4 inch pumps. These are the designer's interns (the universal intern uniform is always all black and pumps regardless of who your interning for) and they will be taking your tickets. Here's where you might have to lie. You can tell the interns a number of things and I've seen all of them work (the fashion industry is somewhat unorganized, unpaid interns do everything and are often overwhelmed and will make mistakes; with that there's no such thing as a iron clad guest list -someone always mistakenly gets left off the list, maybe even the designer's mother). The keyword to remember is "standby". Most people believe you have to have a ticket to get in the show, no ifs, ands, or buts. But there is always standby seating (well seats not really, you'll be standing) to make sure the show is standing room only. No matter what your lie/partial truth is include the word standby and don't ask; TELL
I'm a student at Pratt, Parsons, FIT, LIM, and I have to write a paper so I need to standby, I'm an intern with ____  I need a standby pass or just ask Where is standby? and go to it... anything of the sort. Designers actually do want a bit of standbys. It makes the show looked packed. Anything extra you can offer, such as a student ID or some type of company pass makes it even easier but you can still do it without one (I didn't flash my Parsons ID one time at last years FW). Also keep it real, top notch shows will have top notch security. So pick a smaller lesser known designer's show to go to.

So simple as that you're in! And trust me once you been to one you've been to them all and you'll realize watching Fashion Week on beats the Tents hands down!

***Ive read some articles on sneaking into fashion week and most of them talk about how extra (wearing costumes, outlandish outfits) you have to be to get in or its hard to sneak in but honestly I saw most of my classmates at Fashion Week and none of them had to say "Uh I'm a friend of the Designer"***


J.Shari said...

What type of freebies do they usually have in the tents?

J said...

Drinks, food, makeup and hair samples, giveaways, sponsor gifts stuff like that. Unfortunately no free designer stuff and I heard they being skimp during the recession :(

Michael St. James said...

ummm...I could spot Jason Wu, Miuccia Prada, or Diane Von Furstenberg in a heavy crowd blanketed by a dense fog. My only question is, why would anyone want to sneak into's like a long nap. I actually got invited to two shows and I'm not even going. Now for the couture shows in Paris, I'd pretend to be a janitor, security guard, ALT's bf...whatever!

J said...

Thats cause your into fashion! The average person couldnt spot them if they slapped them! I think FW is kinda overrated too... not Andre's bf though lol