I have been to London Fashion Week for two seasons and this September will be my third. I can honestly say it is one of the most exciting yet exhausting times for us bloggers. I thought I would write an insight about things that I wish people could have told me before the first time I attended. Just so I could prepare myself for the mayhem that was about to commence.
Getting tickets for LFW can be very time consuming. You have to pretty much email every brand you want to see with your media kit and flutter your eyelashes. Also, just because you went to a show one season doesn’t guarantee you a spot this season. You have to have a following of some kind and a platform to tell the world about the shows. So, for instance I have my website (which you are currently reading) and my Instagram @jordan_kisskisswinks and my Pinterest! Basically, what I am trying to say is the more followers you have the easier it is to get tickets, Did I mention the tickets get sent to your door!??!! Honestly some of the massive brands have crazy tickets, I love keeping them (maybe I will frame them one day)
However just because you love Topshop and have taken some bathroom outfit selfies, does not mean you are eligible. You really need a strong interest in up and coming styles, you need to have you own sense of style (whilst still be considered ‘on trend’) and most importantly you need to have some kind of influence. You can’t just email brands demanding a ticket and hope they won’t notice you have no influence, because they WILL check! I have had emails from brands inviting me purely because they liked my drag makeup and I have also been turned down by others because it is ‘too much’ or my following is simply just not big enough.
Making sure you have an outfit ‘cool’ enough yet comfy enough to walk around all day is a talent in itself. The idea is to stand out enough to get the photographers eye, but nice enough to not just be wearing a costume. With that said, you WILL see people wearing all kinds of crazy; and that is definitely part of the fun. I like to try and mix vintage with my outfits that way no one will have the same outfit as me. Trust me when I say, I would die if that happened! If you do wear something that is very over the top, do prepare yourself for comments from everyday ‘normal’ people. I got it constantly on the train and sometimes they are not always nice. You do need a tough skin in this business!
London Fashion Week is not just in one venue, the catwalks can be all over London; a lot of the day is running from show to show trying to get a good seat. With that said, last season Pam Hogg well over subscribed and we were waiting two hours and then not allowed in (Cough because they let all famous friends in first cough). Even though you have a ticket does not guarantee you a spot. They do this to make sure that the shows are jam packed to get as many people talking as possible, about the latest collections.
Attending for the first time on your own can be extremely intimidating and standing in queues with people dripping in Gucci can be very overwhelming. Especially if you are like me and don’t own the latest Hermes handbag, and prefer to thrift. However, I have only ever had good experiences meeting people in the queues and I can honestly call a lot of them my friends now. I would just be yourself, and remember you are there for the same reason as anyone in the queue. To see what’s next in the fashion industry before anyone else!
The queues can be crazy and go on for literally miles. There will be a lot bodies so if you are sensitive to crowds and tight spaces, then this might be an issue for you.
Catwalk or Presentation, what’s the difference?
So, you got yourself a ticket; but it says presentation. A lot of attendees see these as ‘not important’ as a catwalk, but these are my favourite as you get such good quality content. Basically, a presentation normally lasts for around 2 hours, the models walk around the stage and stop in places. Perfect for getting those shots! They are normally a lot quieter too. Also, because they last for such a long time, you can pop in within the two-hour window at your own pace. These are just a lot more relaxed and can be really fun.
Photographers and paparazzi
Last season me and my friend Alex dressed in brightly coloured faux fur coats, and the paparazzi went mad. At one point they were literally chasing us and we had to hide. If you are going to wear something to get yourself noticed, it can be quite intimidating. You can literally be posing for over an hour with constant photographers changing, they are even known for grabbing you and making you pose in front of a bus or ‘candidly’ walk across the road. Try and get as many business cards as you can, that way they can tag you in photos and you can repost the images. You can get great free professional content of yourself this way, perfect for Instagram!
I know this sounds ridiculous, but always make sure you are refreshed and fuelled with coffee and water. I like to go to the nearest Starbucks of the venue, you sometimes see celebrities and you never know who you are going to meet. Last time me and Alex met a fashion magazine editor a milliner and a model/photographer, who kindly gave us a cute little photo shoot; literally next to the entrance of the bathroom. However, the photos came out amazing!
Goodie Bags and perks
Normally catwalks are sponsored by a makeup and hair brand, so look out for little goody bags on tables, these are normally jam packed with treats and makeup samples and press releases. If you managed to get some tickets you might get invited to have your hair done, or get invited to parties; where you can loan clothes . I was lucky enough to get my hair done at duck and dry last season and it was such an amazing opportunity.
Speaking of Press Releases, if like me you like to write about the catwalk collections try and pick up the press release. These are perfect for re jogging your memory of details and give you lots of information about the influence and inspirations of the collection (perfect for us bloggers!)
Ideally you need a bag that’s cute enough to be photographed, big enough to fit a water bottle, cameras, laptop, phone, goody bag, etc and small enough to not make you look like you are carrying a swag bag. Basically, you need a Mary Poppins bag. Again, this is something that takes skill, not to mention it has to match your outfit!! Oh god I am already panicking about my outfit and accessories and its six weeks away!
The dreaded Fashion Flu
What’s that you say? Fashion Flu is literally a flu due to being outside for 5 days straight in a massive queue of people. Pretty much everyone gets it and its from exhausting yourself too much.
Below I have made a list of all the things you will need if you are attending fashion week for the first time.
- Video camera
- Spare camera battery
- Laptop (If you are writing content during, or have a waiting break; not a necessity)
- Water Bottle
- Energy Bar / Snacks
- A charged portable power bank
- Business Cards
- Flat comfy shoes if you are wearing heels
- Most importantly Your Tickets
Fashion week isn’t all magic and glamour, not unless your Anna Wintour or Kate Moss. Us little guys have hours of standing around, countless video footage and photograph content to get, endless photographers grabbing and snapping whilst your trying to just cross the road to grab a sandwich. With that said, I wouldn’t change it for the world. I have met so many amazing people, had my hair done for free, been backstage and taken photos of models, had so many laughs, so many photo shoots and made so many incredible moments and memories. I feel truly blessed to able to say that I attend London Fashion Week, and who knows I might make it to New York Fashion Week one day.
A girl can dream.