“Every Year The Women Of New York leave the past behind and look forward for the future. This is known as FASHION WEEK.”
Sex in the City
Now, I am not a woman of New York, but let me tell you, attending New York Fashion Week has been on my list of things to do before I started blogging!! The glitz and glamour of attending runway fashion shows and chit chatting with the “who’s who” seems so wonderful. It’s only been a few years now that bloggers are actually counted amongst those in the industry to be able to attend NYFW. Well, last week I was glad to be in that number, but man did I learn a few things about NYFW that I am here to share with you. Not to mention the snow storm of the year prevented your girl from attending almost 2 full days of it (insert my tears here).
Honestly, I did not plan on attending NYFW this February. But, Marche Robinson of Robinson Style, reached out to me and asked did I have plans to go and if not, lets go together. Well, you didn’t have to ask me twice! It made it an easier decision to take on NYFW with a room mate and someone that I knew. I’ve known Marche through a few blog groups and of course follow her blog!! So I was down for the cause and we started our plans to attend. We clicked instantly when we officially met last week and are planning to attend NYFW in September too!
So anyway, lets cover a few of the things I did in order to prepare for my attendance to NYFW, as well as scoring invitations to shows. Oh, did you think invites just magically appeared in my inbox?? I wish! I am not there yet! You have to put in some work for them. I received invitations from Club Monaco, Jill Stuart and three other presentations thru me contacting the brand! So you have to put yourself out there if you want to get in to some of these events. I would say give yourself a two month time span from the date of the show to get all of these things done:
- Secure accommodations: I stalked sites for a good deal for a flight, so that was easy. Next, was to find a hotel! As a blogger and influencer, you can pitch to different hotels to see if they will host your stay OR provide you with a media rate. So let them know who you are, what you can offer them and have your media kit ready to send to them! If you don’t get any bites, thats ok, just book your hotel and work on Travel content for your blog so that next time you can show them your work providing travel content the next time you reach out.
- Book a photographer: I don’t see how you can attend NYFW without a photoshoot planned! I mean come on, New York is the PERFECT back drop for any blogger. So start scouring photographers in the area and request rates! Usually, rates are a bit higher during NYFW. So thats why I say to start maybe two months prior when you search to give yourself enough time to make a decision and book. I have used Laurel Creative twice and she’s great!
- Draft your email requesting an invite: Some bloggers get invites to shows, presentations and showrooms! How nice, but guess what, there are some of us that have to put in a little work to get invited to shows! So go ahead and get started on crafting your email to brands requesting an invite! I recommend explaining who you are, that you will be attending fashion week and would like to participate in any events they may have. Don’t make it lengthy, just to the point! Find the media contact or PR firm that represents that brand and email them your request! You may have to do some digging around. Google is your friend! Oh, also reach out to showrooms too for visits. Sometimes they have some of their new collections or may even let you borrow some pieces. Most importantly, don’t get discouraged if you don’t hear back immediately. Most of my invites came like 3 days before I arrived so be encouraged!
- Head to NYFW “The Shows” and “Fashion Week Online” website: These sites provide the schedule of all of the shows during Fashion Week. Its a great resource to help you plan what shows you want to attend, location and time. Keep in mind that the full schedule isn’t updated until maybe 1-2 weeks prior to Fashion Week. Use the letter that you drafted and begin sending out to the brands who are on the schedule. Sometimes the schedule will include a PR contact, but mostly it does not.
- Plan what to wear: NYFW comes with the pressure of looking absolutely amazing. But, boo just do you and you will slay anyway, OK!
- Sign up for a FOHR card: If you haven’t heard of FOHR, go and sign up now! FOHR is a great platform for bloggers where they help brands partner with influencers. FOHR also emails you about a few months prior to Fashion Week and ask if you will be attending as they may have brands who want to invite you to shows or events!
Now, lets discuss what I learned attending my first Fashion Week. While we were there, Marche and I talked about how attending NYFW in February was actually good for us in terms of getting our feet wet and learning what to do differently next time. Speaking of getting our feet wet, let me tell y’all about how I missed almost two days of my trip. The snowstorm of the darn year decided to hit New York the day my flight was to leave, which was last Thursday. My flight was cancelled TWICE!! Not only that, my airline didn’t have any other flights going out until that Sunday. Sunday y’all, the day I planned to return home! I was literally devastated. I’m like come on, I am so close!! Well, obviously I made it to New York as you can tell. I ended up buying another ticket by the grace of God, leaving that Friday afternoon with a connecting flight to New York. I didn’t touch down in NYC until 9:00 Friday night. So I missed about 3 events because of the storm. Thankfully, Marche went in my place to two of the events but still! I tried to remind myself to just make the most of it and move on (insert more of my tears here) lol.
So here’s what I learned:
- Try to come a day earlier and Don’t Overbook Yourself: We missed out on a few invites to shows because they were on Wednesday or Thursday morning. I suggest trying to maximize your trip as much as you can so you can get the most out of it. I also think its important to not be held down by a slew of show invites. One blogger I follow said she had FORTY shows to attend. FORTY!!! I’m sorry but thats too darn much. I am over 30 and I require my rest lol. But, my point is that you are in New York, enjoy it! Maybe take a day and just enjoy the city! Hit up all of the hot spots and restaurants, meet some fellow bloggers and hit the town to take pics! Who wants to go on a vacation only to be exhausted every day? Not me!
- Reach out to blog networks: Shopstyle, Bloglovin and Reward Style just to name a few, typically have events during Fashion Week! We didn’t consider reaching out to these networks and we should have. We were so focus on contacting brands we didn’t consider the actual networks in our outreach.
- Wear the Brand: If you love the brand, wear it on a few of your blog posts so that you have blog content to share with the brand when you reach out for a show invite. I adore many brands, but I feel if I focused a little more on having that brand’s clothing on my blog it would have given me a little edge on getting invites!
- Be Organized and Schedule Reminders on your phone: Y’all, this is where we messed up!! We missed a show that we REALLY wanted to attend because we didn’t have the time correct. By the time we realized it and made it to the presentation, it was over ( ok give me the cup of my tears now). So lesson learned, schedule all of your shows and appointments in your phone with an alert so that you don’t commit the same mistake. We thought we were organized, but clearly we were not. Don’t worry, we won’t do this again!!
- Reach out to local area businesses and try to do a brand collaboration: Content is king for a blogger!! So maximize your trip to New York and reach out to some companies there for a collaboration. Spa’s, restaurants, tourism board etc. We thought of this while walking back to our hotel lol. Again, so focused on show invites we didn’t consider other opportunities we could have scored.
All in all, I cannot complain one bit. I love learning lessons and applying them later. What you have to keep in mind is that these tips are nothing unless you go out there and apply them. So that means start now and get prepared by creating great content, build your following, remain consistent and work hard on being a great blogger. So when New York Fashion Week rolls around again you’ll be ready, prepared, hitting the shows and slaying while you work! Not bad at all girl, not bad at all!
My Outfit Details:
(no longer available online, linked similar)
Marche Outfit Details:
Photography: Laurel Creative
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