I’m back from New York Fashion Week and can hardly believe it’s all over! Thank you to my friends at Otterbox for sending me and making sure I had the best time. Being that this was my rookie season at NYFW, there were definitely lessons learned through the experience and what good is knowledge unless you share it? Here are the five lessons I learned during my experience to help you should you head to fashion week in the future:
Wear comfortable shoes. I mean it.
You’re going to be doing a lot of walking at fashion week, in between your subway, cabs and Ubers, because the shows are not always close to each other. Granted, you want to look your best and shoes are definitely the way to pull an outfit together, but consider what your transit footwear is going to be and consider changing them before you enter the venue.
Make friends with the people at the check-in desk.
While I think you should treat everyone with respect, don’t forget to be especially kind to the people who are checking you in at the front. They are the ones that determine where you sit, when you’re allowed to enter, as well as holding other information that may be valuable during your time there, not to mention, they have had the longest day ever and have probably had to deal with rude people the entire time. I’d like to think my kindness at fashion week got me front row a few times, in addition to having access to a bathroom post show when security wasn’t letting anyone in the building.
Have your elevator speech down.
You’re going to meet people: other attendees, people from the brand, maybe even celebrities at fashion week. These people are going to ask you “What do you do?” or “What’s your connection to the event?” You’re going to need to have your straight shooting 1-2 sentence explanation to give to them. The shows are so quick, and keeping with the pace of NYC, most people are either going back to work, to the next show, or out to cocktails, so the clock is ticking. With those that I had great dialogue with but were short on time, I gave them my card and/or asked for theirs. My advice is to not wait too long after an event to follow up with someone because you have to step back for a moment, and think about how many others they met in the process. If you made it as far to give your card or receive theirs, you already have an advantage.
Be prepared for swag.
I love swag as much as the next person, but my suitcase was not ready for the amount of swag I was going to bring home! Sponsors of events are dying to get their products in your hands, so in addition to potentially having a bag on your chair, you may be taking home clothing and product samples just by visiting sponsor booths or being in close proximity to a show! And if you happen to go to more than one show, it will continue to pile up. Full disclosure: I have a box coming in the mail with all of my swag because it was going to weigh my suitcase down too much!
Learn the best spot to catch a cab or an Uber.
NYC is full of one-way streets, which means if you are trying to catch a ride going the opposite way of where you need to go, trying to make a simple turn could take an extra 10-20 minutes if there is a detour or extra traffic, which in turn will make you late as well as rack up a high tab. Take the extra time to get familiar with your area via Google Maps because a one block walk could save you lots in the long run.
Again, many thanks to Otterbox for sending me!
Share your lessons learned at NYFW – or in any of your travels – below!