Ever wondered what happens behind the scenes at New York Fashion Week? Róisín Flanagan gives her inside scoop
Every person worth their studs and spikes knows that there are certain weeks of the year checked off on your calendar solely dedicated to eating, sleeping and breathing pure all-consuming fashion. I am of course talking about the fashion weeks that pepper cities across the globe and leave thousands swooning over the most coveted pieces of the upcoming season. But it is New York fashion week that is the pinnacle for all designers and editors; the mother ship. And I was lucky enough to be a part of this crazy fashion fuelled New York week.
I moved to New York one month ago with an MA in Journalism and a year’s interning under my belt. Prior to leaving I scanned the internet furiously looking for any designers, PR’s, stylists that needed assistance for fashion week Then on September 6th I received an email from an event management company in New York called LDJ Productions looking for interns for fashion week. Twelve hours later I was outside the Lincoln Centre with a backstage pass for an ELLE Magazine show.
Our crew were all told to dress in black and after a quick Starbucks run for eight soy lattes, collections by nine designers had landed and needed to be taken out of their packaging, steamed and hung in order of model. Accessories had to be laid out and caterers needed to be shown where to set up. The hair and make up team began to trickle in, as did the models, and soon it was chaos backstage. We ran out of double sided tape and the heel of a models shoe came off. Queue a mad dash to the nearest pharmacy one block away.
We started at 9am, but the show wasn’t until 4.30pm, as I started checking off the model list, actress Christina Ricci walked in backstage to say hello and good luck to everyone! I shook her hand and told her I was a big fan of hers to which she replied ‘”I’m delighted!” I was then informed Alexa Chung was in the audience to cheer on her friend Welch rocker Matthew Hitt whom was modelling in the show, but there was no time for being star struck as models needed help walking to and from the stage in their seven inch heels. The music pounded and stylists with tape ran frantically to and fro checking outfits. Sequins got caught and zips stuck, but twelve minutes, fifteen models and four outfit changes later, and after a huge standing ovation, calmness was once again restored upon the Lincoln Center. Models wiped off their make up, the hair team packed up. Clothes were hung and wheeled out, and my heart finally stopped pounding.
As I went to get my subway home, I realised it’s hard to believe hours, weeks, and months go in preparing for a twelve minute show. But hey, that’s the glorious unpredictable world of fashion and that is why I, and thousands more love it.