New York Fashion WeekTuesday, September 18, 2012
For me, New York Fashion Week is something of a paradox. The shows are supposed to be about looking forward—defining what we'll be seeing in magazines, on store windows, and on stylish bodies in seasons to come. But for me, fashion week always feels like looking back—on a life that I used to know.
It's been four years since I turned my back on a career in fashion. I'd spent a big chunk of my life dedicated to it: buying trips disguised as vacations to help out with the family business, a couple of years churning out fashion pages for a magazine, a short stint creating and selling my own line of accessories, a year immersed in fashion school, and yet another toiling away at New York fashion internships in everything from forecasting to PR. At the end of it all, I threw in the Hermès scarf and bowed out, realizing that I would be far happier as an appreciative consumer of fashion rather than a slave to it.
But fashion week always sucks me back into the vortex, as publications that I once worked for tap me to cover a show or two on their behalf. It brings me back to a past life where work trips consisted of jetting off to Singapore or Hong Kong to attend fashion shows and store openings. While my life is a lot less glamorous these days, I quite prefer being able to just dabble in the fashion circus. I feel that I'm able to appreciate the experience much more when my mind's not working overtime to wring out as many stories and editorials from each collection as possible. I get to enjoy the show as it unfolds, and marvel in the designer's talent and vision.
As exciting as it was to be in the thick of things with all the celebrities, models, and fashion cognoscenti, when the runway cleared and the crowd started to filter out, I found myself saying quite happily, "That was great! Now back to my real life."