4 Reasons to Stay at Home During Fashion Week

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When I consider the emotional and physical exhaustion, plus the stress that it puts on every aspect of my personal and professional life for the week long fashion olympics/marathon known as fashion week, I'm oftentimes tempted to sit out a season, and see how it goes.

In all honesty, I  think the biggest impact it would have is more out of FOMO (fear of missing out) than anything else related to my career and blog.

There seems to be a common assumption that if you have anything to do with fashion, you naturally would participate in fashion week, but more and more, I don't believe that it should be a mask for establishing credibility and authenticity in the fashion game.

Now approaching my 11th year covering New York Fashion Week, I think that I can lend a solid opinion on four points as to why you can sit it out, and feel guilt-free about your decision. When deciding if, and even how much you should participate, ask yourself these things first:

 Is It What You Usually Do?

If you have a steady focus on covering the runway looks, brands, designers, and trends, then heading “to the tents” may be for you. If it feels like a stretch for your blog or think your readers don't really care about it, then the water gets a little murky over fulfilling a personal desire to attend versus a blog-related one.

If you are dying to experience it, maybe come once, and only for a few days of it opposed to the entire week to see if it may be worth it for you. Look at your stats on social media and blog analytics afterward to see if they spike, drop, or stay the same. This may give you a tangible, factual reason to participate (or not) in it again.

Are You Reaping Direct, Monetary Benefits From Being There?

This is an easy one; it's pretty much a yes or no! Usually a month or two out from fashion week, I will pitch around some ideas to brands that are fashion week related for collaborations, sponsorships, and guest posts that take advantage of my time and experience at the shows. I also cover fashion week steadily for some of my freelance work, so although it isn't blog-related, I'm still making money off of attending the event.

In order for me to justify taking my time away from my other work responsibilities and personal life, I need to reconcile it with an actual dollar amount.

I think it's a good way of thinking, by starting to put a dollar amount to your time if you don't already, because it can make doing right by yourself that much easier.

Is It Cost Prohibitive?

Leading in from the last question, attending fashion week can be EXTREMELY expensive, even for us locals who live here and can navigate around with minimal fuss. Even so, during fashion week I pretty much eat every meal out, buy coffee like a fiend, have to take taxis or Uber between short show time slots at different locations, and sometimes pay for wifi and beauty services to look my best for the week.

If you're coming from out of town, having to pay for transportation and can't stay with a friend or family member who lives in the area for free, it's going to get very uneconomical fast, since NYC hotels are constantly at a premium price.

How Much of What You Need Can Be Found Online?

Sometimes I honestly feel like I wasted my time going to a show, due the limited visibility I had from my seat to the lack of information about the looks/collection, to the suffocating herd-like crush of the attendees rushing out afterward.  A few seasons ago I relegated the last day of New York Fashion Week, which has the least amount of shows, Thursday, to a “working from home in my PJs,” voraciously digesting all that I saw throughout the week, and pumping out a ton of articles kind-of-day.

It felt really great to write uninterrupted, occasionally watching live streams of shows while I worked, reviewing streams and images of shows from earlier in the week on sites like Style.com, and going through the emailed press releases on beauty and fashion that had been sent within 12 hours of the respective shows ending.

I really had all that I needed, thanks to the wonders of the online world to have not attended the shows at all, with an unobstructed view to my 22″ monitor of the glorious new looks arriving in stores in the coming months.

I never have to work hard to find what I need online that's in reference to fashion week, and there are several digital streaming sources to use, with my most-used one being the one I embed on my site, the Official Live Stream from Mercedez-Benz New York Fashion Week, provided by Rightster.

So based on your answers to these questions, are you going to chill at home this season, or will I see you at NYFW?

For more helpful IFB features on fashion week, see here.

 

 

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18 Responses

  1. Joanne

    I won’t be attending this fashion week, hopefully I’ll get the opportunity to attend one year! For the time being though, I’m perfectly happy with keeping track of the shows online. With shows being live streams, and the excellent photo quality now available it just makes every thing so much easier. ‘Style.com’ is definitely my most visited site during fashion week. I love being able to get the best view of the shows, no matter where they are, from the comfort of my house. 🙂

    Joanne | http://www.fashion-oh.blogspot.com

    Reply
  2. That Paki Boy

    While fashion weeks are comparatively a new phenomenon in Pakistan, I have felt the same as you. It helps to save money and prepare a wardrobe long beforehand the fashion week, and that manages to save me cash. Though the transport to and from shows is what matters. As for sitting at home and analyzing from there, one can’t really tell. Sometimes, users want the first hand experience, and come to our profiles on twitter and instagram just for that experience and feel like they belong. If a blogger is comfortable with not giving their followers that, then there is nothing wrong with it. Obviously, it comes down to the analysis of the collection at the end.

    And depending on the priorities of the blogger, chose whatever you like. Just make sure you know what you are getting yourself into 🙂

    Thank you for this post

    Reply
  3. Dovile

    I’ve got an opportunity to watch Marie Katrantzou and Richard Nicoll shows few years ago from the first row and Bora Aksu from the second (it was London Fashion Week). Magical experience… But usually I’m happy to watch shows from my laptop. Better view. During London Fashion Week I enjoy parties and do networking with awesome people.

    Reply
  4. Kali

    Hi Julie,
    Thanks for this post! It’s interesting to see a breakdown of pros/cons from a veteran.

    I will be attending NYFW this year for the first time ever. While my blog is still relatively new and I’m not making any direct monetary benefit from being there, it’s been #1 on my bucket list for ages!

    The way I’m doing it is pretty rogue – I was denied press credentials but have been digging and hitting the pavement to connect with designers. So more than anything this will be a fantastic adventure and experiment and something that I will thoroughly enjoy recapping on my blog regardless of the outcome. 🙂

    Kali
    http://www.in-spades.com

    Reply
    • julia

      I think it’s still important to honor it if it’s on the bucket list! 😉

      Reply
      • Kali

        Hi Julia,
        I just wanted to follow up and say that my NYFW experience was amazing!! I got to cover some amazing shows and take great photos, interview a designer (Sheena Trevedi), go backstage at one show and take a look into some vintage archives. It was so well worth it. 🙂
        I’m recapping everything on my blog: http://www.in-spades.com
        Thanks again for the article!

  5. Sheryl Blasnik

    I am attending NYFW yet again but with the advent of live stream I have cut back on the number of shows I attend. I am also LIVE streaming every NYFW show from the tents at Lincoln Center on my blog. Watch over 50 shows starting on Sept 4th at 9am.

    http://fashiondevelopmentgroup.com/

    PS – Does anyone have the Designer Contact List from IMG? If you are willing to share shoot me an e-mail. I would be so grateful.

    Thanks

    Sheryl Blasnik

    Reply
  6. Crystal

    Interesting blog post and thank you for the tips. I’m going to New York Fashion Week for the first time to attend the shows, I don’t know what to expect, but I’m sure it’s gonna be overwhelming. I think any fashion blogger should experience it once in their fashion blogging career. I’ll see if I would think otherwise after this 🙂
    Thank you.
    Crystal
    http://crystalphuong.net

    Reply
    • julia

      You are correct Crystal that it may be overwhelming, but I’m sure you will have a great time! Post an updated comment so we know how it went for you! 🙂

      Reply
  7. Faith Bowman

    I go places that I’m invited to. If a pr company is kind enough to remember me and look for more coverage from me, that’s cool. But I refuse to beg for invites like I used to when I first moved to NY. These days, I’m looking to extend my brand into doing real things like design collabos and styling photoshoots, or getting paying writing jobs. I’m lucky to live in New York, but NYFW, while exciting, is also a lot of work. Taking pics, standing on lines waiting to get into shows, shifting around in a seat waiting for a show to start, hoping for good photos, etc.

    I’m not complaining? But I’ve also just looked at whet was happening on Style.com and scored good stories writing about what trends I saw emerging, what shows looked cool to me, etc.

    Reply
  8. Anastasia

    Honestly, it’s not so vital if the blog is middle-sized. You won’t get a good seat, and the view from the standing raw is horrible, and will be lost for the brands among more “influential” blogs and fashionistas. Even for my main work on the big fashion online source right now I use style.com for writing all the reviews ( than they upload they own pics for the article though). After having attended MFW for several years while I was working in the fashion magazine I guess I have had enough – don’t even understand how someone wants to get into this fashion week mess on their own will:)))))))
    XX
    http://fashionpeekaboo.com

    Reply
  9. Gabrielle Amani

    Because of my residency, I will be attending Fashion week this year, but I don’t think I’ll participate in every day of the week. I personally love the energy of fashion week. I love seeing the new clothes, people and shoes. However, this time always stresses me out because school is starting. Because of school and my budget, I wont be able to go to all the shows/presentations, but I’ll watch everything from the comfort of my computer screen!

    Gabrielle Amani

    Reply
  10. Jackii

    This article is really interesting- I never thought of it this way. I’m a clothing designer for an eco fashion company, and I made it to this page actually looking for people who DID want to attend fashion week. 🙂 My company is also seeking eco-friendly or natural companies to sponsor the show. If anyone would like to come to a different kind of event, the show will be held on a hotel rooftop overlooking Lincoln Center on the evening of Sept. 12. If this article hasn’t convinced you otherwise (and you’re over 21), come see Indigo Apparel’s SS 2015 collection and stay for the after party!

    Reply