Do Bloggers Need to Be at Fashion Week?
By: Jennine Jacob

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True story, as soon as I started blogging my dream was to make it to New York Fashion Week. Now that it’s now my seventh season covering Fashion Week, I’m still working on creating those perfect posts that both readers and brands are happy with. Just Friday, I was talking with an influential blogger sitting front row at a show, who admitted her traffic goes down during Fashion Week, “My readers can just go to Style.com for runway shots.” I asked her why she goes to fashion week then she replied, “Mostly to make connections, and to get my face out there.”

When going to shows, I try to go with the intent of covering in some manner. Sometimes it’s possible to get great coverage with backstage access, an impromptu meeting with someone I’ve been trying to get an interview with for months, showing first glimpses of the designers I love, and love to wear. Sometimes the collection doesn’t speak to me, or I can’t get good photos or a good soundbite to share with my readers.

Earlier today, the Observer published an article quoting NYFW pioneer, Fern Mallis, “It’s clear that bloggers are a significant presence [at Fashion Week], but I’m not sure all of them are justified in their presence and their sense of entitlement and when they belong and how important they are.”

While the original article discusses disgruntled photographers feeling edged out of the media risers by bloggers and our iPhones. The bigger question is, what exactly are bloggers doing at Fashion Week? Are bloggers expected to post about every single show? Are buyers expected to buy from every single show they attend? Or editors to review every single show? To be honest, I’ve only seen printed reviews of actual fashion shows in WWD, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.

Why bloggers need to be at fashion week really depends on the actual purposes of their prospective blogs. Some bloggers are great for generating PR pieces think Elin Kling styling Tibi’s runway show, Blonde Salad walking the runway at Alberta Feretti, and the original stories that caused it all with Bryan Boy at Dolce Gabbana and Tavi at Dior Couture.  Some bloggers are great at live coverage like Tom and Lorenzo, Chi City Fashion, Eat Sleep Wear.  Then you have all those street style photographers showing who went to the shows. Bloggers are part of the PR machine that is Fashion Week. Do we have inflated egos at times? Yeah. But show me an industry of honest-to-goodness humility and I’ll give you a cookie.

Perhaps it’s just up to the brands to justify who goes to their shows, and it’s just up to those who want to be there to stay relevant enough to get the invites. Bloggers included.

 

 Image taken by Jennine Jacob with her iPhone at Made Fashion Week

 

 

Comments

  1. Avatar of Kimberly
    Kimberly says:

    I’ll always wonder if brands are getting a roi when they hire or even invite bloggers. It’s not so much that I question why bloggers are at fashion week, I wonder why so many of them are there, and in the front row at that. Most of these brands can get more press with celebrities attending. And I feel for photographers, and all of the industry workers who are truly qualified for these jobs that are being pushed out by “kids with iphones”.
    http://oohlaluxe.net

  2. Avatar of FashionableUnicorn

    I’m kinda obsessed with NYFW. It’s my dream to go, not just because it would give opportunities for posts, but because I’ve never been to New York and the fashion industry is where I’d like to work in the future. I actually watched every Spring 2013 show on style.com (crazy, I know) and blogged about it (http://fashionableunicorn.blogspot.com/2012/09/trends-from-spring-2013-shows.html) but I really would like to go to NYFW and get the whole experience. Even if I didn’t go to any shows, I’d love to just go to New York City and be part of such a major fashion event. Maybe next year! :)
    xx Michaella
    http://fashionableunicorn.blogspot.com/

  3. Avatar of Laura Wears
    Laura Wears says:

    I have often wondered whether fashion week blog coverage actually attracts or repels readers. I think the answer to this lies in the type of fashion blog that covering fashion week… I enjoy seeing fashion week coverage on blogs like WhoWhatWear because their format already integrates fashion shows, celebrity fashion, etc. For this type of blog, fashion week coverage is an easy fit. However for bloggers who normally post daily outfit pictures, I feel that fashion week coverage is actually detracting from the reason I visit that blog (I want to see what they wear on a daily basis).

  4. Avatar of Caity @ Moi Contre La Vie

    Great post! I was wondering about this myself. As with you, my dream since day one (and maybe pre-blog if I’m being honest) was to attend a show. Any show. It was just a wild dream then, and a year later is still a dream for me. But I agree whole heartedly with the point that the blogger’s purpose for being their, their goals and what they hope to accomplish should drive whether and where they attend.

  5. Avatar of Little Black Book

    I love covering Fashion Weeks, I actually just got back from NZFW and am still getting through my coverage.

    I think it is a bit sad when you see bloggers attending FWs and yet they don’t seem to post any content at all, just party and get happy snaps with important people (I’m kind of thinking of Fashion Toast, no offence to her intended).
    I think it is up to the PR agency and organisers to research the blogger before inviting him/her to the shows – if you can see from their blog that they don’t really review shows or cover them, well i guess you know how they’ll ‘cover’ FWs.
    I can tell you my hits go up when I cover Fashion Weeks, and I definitely get more likes and followers on Facebook/Twitter/Instagram from it. It also is fantastic to network yourself as a brand :)

    If you guys feel like reading some review from New Zealand Fashion Week:
    http://www.littleblackbook.net.au/little_black_book/runway/

  6. Avatar of ELENA
    ELENA says:

    This is a big topic, I believe everyone here want’s to go to the major fashion weeks.But once you are out there , it’s up to you to decide what are you going to post on your blog. And most important what your readers want to see.
    I believe sometimes bloggers get invited just to be seen and photographed at that specific show. I’ve attended almost all of the show at SKFW and even had my own show. But where I am from the problem is that there are almost no bloggers who will attend or blog about the collections. so anyone interested in attending ?? let me know , and I’ll see what I can do :)

    http://elenadodevska.blogspot.com/

    Love Elena

  7. Avatar of Look Fabulous For Less
    Megan says:

    It’s a place I will never go or be invited to, because I blog about designer fashion in charirty shops, and NFW is never going to be interested in what happened 4 years ago and has now surfaced, slightly crumpled, in a British Red Cross shop in Scotland.

    I think a key point is that Runway Fashion can be got from various locations, what people want from a Blogger who is there is an opinion, and not some gushing, sycophantic appraisal of someone who just wants to be recognised by the designer that they’re fawning over. No we want an honest opinion of a normal person who perhaps feels that oversized coats are not the way forward for the “big boned” despite it being a massive trend this season, or that Androgyny can make you look like a lesbian, or worse, a man, if done wrong, unless that’s what you’re going for, in which case, go forth in your brogues and braces and don’t let me stop you!

    http://lookfabulousforless.wordpress.com/

    • Avatar of Look Fabulous For Less
      Megan says:

      Or perhaps this article is just here to bring out our inner bitch ‘cos we’re all at work, and they’re all watching effortlessly beautiful models float up and down the runway in clothes we will never afford/fit in to!

  8. Avatar of Kholá
    Kholá says:

    I tend not to post too much about NYFW unless something really grabs my attention. I’ve done only two for the week starting last Thursday.

    I would love to go to some shows for Fashion Week and would probably post if I was there because my local community/city doesn’t get the opportunity to see shows of that level in person very often.

  9. Avatar of Bellachicstyle.com

    I loved this post – and one thing that bothers me is that NYFW invites a lot of bloggers from Milan and LA and other places outside of New York city when there are a lot of great local bloggers right here that should be invited instead. Perhaps, rather than having the same blogger on rotation at every fashion week, giving the option to newer bloggers to attend. I believe allowing bloggers to go is great in general for the industry – bloggers are posting photos of daily or styled outfits which readers gravitate toward the trends (often times wearing big designers). What designer would not be interested in allowing bloggers to style certain pieces after the show? This brings more meaning to readers who visit the bloggers website to see how they style pieces of the designers vs. just seeing the collection on Style.com.

    BellachicStyle.com

  10. Avatar of Little Black Book

    I also wanted to add, Fashion Week is a great way for a blogger (like yourself) given that you are invited to attend, to work with brands and wear their designs – build a relationship and remember to maintain it.
    Even if its from a designer show you’ve seen during Fashion Week – talk to their PR agency or even the designers if you can and try to borrow a few pieces, you’ll be helping them and they’ll be helping you with great content for editorials.

  11. Avatar of CynthiaCM
    Cynthia says:

    Bloggers can offer a unique perspective that mainstream publications will never say. For example, after the Tory Burch presentation yesterday, I questioned whether some of the pieces would work on anyone under 5’7″ because they weren’t alterable due to certain detailing. How many magazines are going to ask that? They either love it or hate it.

    http://www.delectablychic.com/2012/09/tory-burch-springsummer-2013/

    Of course, I covered the show remotely via watching it online. However, not every designer is going to stream.

  12. Avatar of Inspirations & CELEBRATIONS

    I think it’s a great advancement for the entire blogging community to have bloggers invited to attend (and even participate in!) NYFW. These selected individuals are pioneering the way for the rest of us on our path, and the fact that these major brands are inviting them to sit in the front row further validates the growing presence and influential peer-to-peer power of bloggers.

    With increasing online traffic and an expanding (and loyal) readership, the line between a post by blogger and an article written by an online magazine writer becomes very blurred. When it comes to PR, it all comes down to sphere of influence and the ability to reach a bigger audience. So I’d say both are important.

    That said, congrats to all those who attended NYFW. May there be more and more opportunities for all of us bloggers in the near future!

  13. Avatar of Pam
    Pam says:

    For me, It’s a Dream to go! and it’s happening soon But I think we should be there so we can see trends that coming up and it’s also a place for us to show our style when we go to the shows, I really Think Fashion Bloggers should go and because we all want to work in the fashion industry in one way or another. we can make friends and meet new people and also sometimes it’s our dream to a designed so I think we should be there if that’s what we want to do someday.
    I just want to go to Paris and London and tokyo fashion week also since I like it so much and wear the trends from there.
    Xoxo,Pam

  14. Avatar of ShoppeGirls
    ShoppeGirls says:

    I would love to go in the very near future…….hmmm one day.
    How and where do I add my link?
    Vicki
    http://shoppegirls.blogspot.com.au/

  15. Avatar of clairelynette

    Oh I think it really depends on the blogger and their audience. For instance I have no intention of being a journalist and even though I’ve trained as a designer have little interest in fashion week. It’s the ateliers/studios that draw my attention because that’s where all the hard work, sweat, and headaches happen. What’s on the runway or who was sitting next to it isn’t always important, at least to me. Yet, for another blogger being at fashion week might be the highest eschelon they could ever hope to reach and it may be a boon to their readership depending on how they cover it.

    It all goes to show that not all fashion bloggers are the same and shouldn’t be regarded as such. Some want to break into the industry (which honestly isn’t that hard to do), some want to showcase their personal style, some want to comment on trends, some want to make new trends, some want a platform where they can challenge themselves creatively, some focus on vintage, some on couture, etc… and then there are some who want it all. I think the only thing that can be definitively said about all fashion bloggers is that they want to share, but not everyone wants to share the same thing. Good thing there’s enough room in the pool for everyone even at fashion week.

  16. Avatar of Hilary Inspired

    Totally agree on every count. Well written, Jeannine!

  17. Avatar of Chaucee from Streets and Stripes

    I’m not really interested in bloggers covering actual shows, but rather the parties and other happenings that go on during NYFW.

  18. Avatar of Patrinia
    Patrinia says:

    ’m not here to ask could we follow eachother. I wanted to say hi and ask you to visit my blog. Of course I’ll return the favour. I don’t like how people here ’trade followers’ because in my opinion, it ruins the original idea of followers. They should be people who like and would love to visit your blog again and again. Still, seems like nowdays people hope to get a big amount of readers and forget what blogging is about. So if you really like my blog, please follow it. I’m not sending this message to get one reader more. I’m just spreading my blog and hoping that someone, who’d like it, hasn’t discovered it yet.

    Patricia,

    http://www.coco-mocco.blogspot.com

  19. Avatar of Brittany Landers

    Absolutely! I think bloggers are the middlemen/women between high-fashion and real-life consumers. They bring a sense of relatability to the trends we see and also inspiration as to how to wear these items.

    -Brittany, founder of Suburb Chic
    http://suburbchicblog.blogspot.com
    http://www.twitter.com/suburbchicblog

  20. Avatar of boyfromdagbon
    Abdel says:

    Great post. I almost wrote an article to yours for my blog – http://www.boyfromdagbon.com except I probably would have been one of those bloggers getting annoyed at people with iPhones or getting in the way of other photographers. I must admit, everyone has their own style and the key is in your followers or what they like.

    My reason for going to fashion week is purely for the style, photography and eccentric fashion that occurs during the season.

    Abdel

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