It’s the day after Paris Fashion Week and I am still coming down from the strangest high I’ve ever experienced (the ONLY high I’ve ever experienced, let’s not get it twisted)…
If you had told me a year ago, or even 6 months ago that I would be living in Paris during Fashion Week, taking pictures of Kendall Jenner for my blog, I would have snorted my god awful London coffee through my nose and laughed all the way back to my overpriced, mouse infested closet flat.
But, since life can turn on a dime, I was able to attend the last two days of Paris Fashion Week. And by ATTEND, I mean, I simply downloaded the schedule and showed up to the shows in my £11 Forever 21 dress. Sometimes things can be so much simpler than we allow them to be.
Life Mantra #362: Embrace simplicity.
I cannot pretend that I had any clue what I was doing. For those bloggers who pretend that they know everything and everyone and fit into super cliquey, Parisian social circles even though they are from the middle of Oklahoma (love you OK!), well, go read the rest of the internet. This is my corner and I am from Nova Scotia and we don’t do Fashion Week.
Life Mantra #153: All of life can be a lesson, if you let it. We DIDN’T used to do Fashion Week. But we do now.
The first show we went to was Junko Shimada at their showroom in the 8th arrondissement. I don’t know who Junko Shimada is but she has a really cool name and her clothes were all stripey and her models were on spinning pedestals. We stood outside of the show room with about 30 other curious folks and watched the commotion inside.
Shiatzy Chen is a Taiwanese fashion house, (which I know now), but at the time, we just showed up and spotted three signs reading, Standing Line, Invitation, and Press. Standing Line seemed good enough for us and I assumed it was similar to concerts and hockey games, where you can get in if there is room but you can’t sit. I was le correcte.
*Fashion Week FYI: It seems most shows have standing lines, although they don’t always announce this. It always pays to hang out outside the show and be friendly with whoever is on the door. To be fair, all the bored looking people with greasy hair DID indeed get into the shows, but I just think being friendly is better for karma and life and people in general.
Life Mantra #46: Don’t stop being Canadian just because you live abroad. If you want to get into a show, act happy and excited. Don’t pretend you would rather be elsewhere. The right people will spot you.
While standing in line, we noticed everyone in front of us had pieces of paper that said something completely irrelevant on them. I can’t remember now what it was, it had nothing to do with getting into the show, but EVERYONE had them. (Hang on, because my favorite part of life is coming up.)
Security started coming down the line and grabbing certain people to let inside. They were absolutely looking at people’s outfits because hey, Fashion Week, and my $10 leggings from Garage all of a sudden seemed like the most disgusting choice in all the world, instead of my comfiest, most favorite pants ever that make my bum look nice. It was at this point that I turned to my boyfriend/world’s greatest photographer and told him that if we got separated because of the crowds (it was actually because he was dressed like a babe and I looked like a girl from Nova Scotia, but I didn’t tell HIM THAT) to just head into the show without me. He was the better looking choice to represent this blogger/photographer duo, plus, he had the camera and I was confident that I had quizzed him enough on supermodels and celebrities that if he saw someone remotely awesome, he would recognize them and get a cool photo or something.
I was putting A LOT of confidence in his model recognition skills, but sometimes in emotionally heightened situations, my dramatic side comes out and I get all, “Live your life without me, I’ll never let go, Jack!” (For the record, my boyfriend’s name is not Jack, which makes these situations all the more dramatic as he has never seen Titanic. Imagine.)
It was only two minutes later that “Jack” decided to ask the security guard if we were going to be able to get into the show without this white piece of paper that EVERYONE else had in their hand. Wait for it.
He walked up to the security, opened his mouth to speak, and the guard waved him right into the show. He didn’t even look twice at him or the GIANT HOLE in his jeans that only the day before I had HUNG MY UMBRELLA IN. Le sigh. He was the last one from the standing line who was ushered in, so I had no choice but to mouth “Oh my God, oh my God” to myself over and over and over again and hope he got a couple good shots.
*Fashion Week FYI: After everyone enters a show, the security will announce that the show is closed, so all those waiting can GTFO basically. They then re-set all the barriers, and everyone still waiting outside re-arranges themselves accordingly, to then become the crowd “waiting to get photos of the cool kids when they come out of the show” even though just minutes before, they were all the crowd who is “so bored and doesn’t care at all that I’ve been waiting in this line for an hour and I spent weeks putting this outfit together and oh my God what if I’m not good enough?!” Cute.
I stood at the barriers until people started trickling out, which *Fashion Week FYI: only seemed to be about 20 minutes after they went in. Fashion shows are really short.
I thought I would get my phone ready to take a picture of “Jack” as he came out of the show he had just waltzed into after not even wanting to go to fashion week because: rain.
30 seconds later, out walks Kendall Jenner, who happened to be a guest at the show. Right behind her was my boyfriend’s ego, then my boyfriend appeared a minute later. Sometimes I actually shake my head at my life.
Apparently the show was amazing and backstage was amazing and Kendall was amazing and it could all be a lie, I don’t really know, because I WAS OUTSIDE IN MY GARAGE BRAND LEGGINGS.
Life Mantra #219: See the humor in all things. (Or die sad and alone, because life will surely disappoint you).
Life Mantra #220: Surround yourself with people you admire, respect and look up to. (Because then it’s so much easier to share in other’s successes and happiness instead of feeling jealousy or hatred, which also leads to dying sad and alone).
THIS is apparently what happened inside the show, all thanks to my guy. If you aren’t fascinated by gorgeous models in amazing clothes with funky lipstick, then maybe go check Facebook or something.
The energy outside of the Shiatzy Chen show was incredible and I can completely understand just one tiny part of what keeps people in that world. It’s an excitement about something huge and well known –celebrities and fashion– but also something unimportant and irrelevant –celebrities and fashion.
I got the same rush while working in television for several years before moving across the pond. While working on tv productions, you need to be obsessed with your job, prepared for anything and ready and willing to accommodate the needs of ANYONE. This mindset sort of tricks your brain into thinking that what you are doing is really, REALLY important. At the same time, you still have this niggling feeling that, “Oh yeah, I’m ONLY making tv.” Tv is another one of those things that is huge and known (who doesn’t watch it?) but that can also sometimes be irrelevant and unimportant (nature, and babies and fresh air, anyone?).
At the end of the day, it is still all So.Much.Fun to be a part of. Creativity is so important to me, and Fashion Week, with all it’s fluff and silliness is also about celebrating the creative minds working in a specific field. To witness any amount of that is a thrill.
After Shiatzy Chen, we ran off to the last show of the day which was Paul & Joe and was held just a few minutes away at Palais de Tokyo. We didn’t manage to get in, but got some great street style shots and some photos of the models exiting after the show.
The energy was electric, the sun was setting, the Eiffel Tower was in the background and I had no choice but to just be grateful and happy.
DAY 2 of our Fashion Week adventure was actually the last day of Fashion Week. We made it to the venues of YDE, a Danish brand I was dying to get into and Moon Young Hee, a Korean designer based in Paris. While we didn’t get into any of the shows, I did happen to get my photo taken by lots of strangers, meet one too many creepy old man photographers AND see boobs when I didn’t want to see boobs.
Paris Fashion Week was a insanely fun experience that sets the bar for all my fashion experiences to come. Until then….