How to Dress to Attend a Show at Fashion Week


Fashion Week is a marvelous time to show off your street style and really capture the attention of the media. Those fashion editors will write about you, your frenemies will be keenly watching you and you will choose to feel like the star of the show yourself. After all, while the runways are full of couture and ready-to-wear designs, it is also the attendants who set the latest trends. This in itself means that you must be extra careful about who and what you are wearing when you step into the halls hosting the Fashion Week shows. Think of it this way; you have to go to a really glamorous party, wherein you will meet some incredibly stylishly dressed people, who teeter on some impossible heels and show off a great amount of skin, have extravagant tastes and extremely thin legs. Now, think about how you are going to be blending in instead of sticking out like a weed among the flowers. It’s really important to learn how to dress to attend a fashion week show, prior to hurrying to hit the streets to meet the most popular “It girls” and fashion influencers posing for the camera lenses of professional photographers!


While Fashion Week is extremely fun to attend, there are certain guidelines you must ensure you follow. The event is like that party, except you truly need to make an incredible impression on the high-level individuals in attendance, as it’s probably extremely important for your future career. The networking opportunities are endless, but the way to the hearts of these people is paved with gold and fashion difficulties. There are 10 places you must go throughout the day, 10 different venues in which meetings will be held that define your next steps for the season. All this must be done while you have lengthy hikes and high-speed sprints to get from one place to the other, and for a grand total of four weeks. It is exhausting, it is frustrating, but most of all, it can become a nightmare if you are not ready for it.

Some things that you should always remember before you head out to the show: while you may think that the clothes you wear are the most important thing, it is actually the impression the pieces leave on the onlookers and those very important networking contacts who may or may not have the privilege of wedging your bottom beside for a 20-minute show while straining to become comfortable in some shape or form. Dressing up for the fashion week can mean that you are dressing up for work, or promoting your personal brand. It can mean dressing up to show loyalty towards another label, or even encouragement for the designer whose show you are now watching. No matter what you are dressing for, remember these few style rules on what to wear to a fashion show:

1. Keep it Casual: The truth is that you are not trying to be the model at the show but merely there to enjoy the party with all the rest of them. You do not need to look like a million dollars yourself, even if the pieces being showcased have such an incredible price tag. Chances are that you will barely even be caught on camera so just go with the flow and try to be a bit more like you, personally.


2. Know a Tailor: There’s nothing worse than seeing a woman get out of a taxi and enter a fashion show venue while looking like she has borrowed her garments from someone either a size or two bigger or much smaller than herself. Pulled button, extra loose blazers, pants that look like they are painted on but should not do so, or even skirts with hems way too short to be part of the latest fashion trends; chances are you are going to be committing a terrible faux pas if you do not get yourself to a tailor and make each piece you are wearing fit you personally like a glove. Your body is not generic and neither should be your clothes. Weird pocket bulges and sleeves that are too long for your own arms, no matter how shapely they may be, are all too common a problem that must be eradicated quickly.

3. Do Not Spend a Fortune: Even if the couture pieces on display begin from a few hundred thousand dollars each, the ensemble you have pulled together as an attendee of the Fashion Week shows need not cost you an arm and a leg- unless, of course, you are a multi-millionaire to begin with. You don’t need to put in the month’s rent to buy a new outfit either. Just pool your money for something that is more of an investment piece, versatile for many occasions and that which is sure to have you looking and feeling as amazing as can be. You want to be able to wear the garments once again and not donate them to the nearest Salvation Army.


See also: How To Start Your Own Fashion Business

4. Sunglasses Are Not Always Cool: The diva in you can always come out during the Fashion Week through a pair of fun sunglasses to compliment the pout to your lips. The problem is that the shows themselves are already very dim so you will need the extra lighting against your eyes to see all the better and truly enjoy the pieces paraded before you. You are cheating yourself by trying to stay incognito and that just won’t do. A woman’s confidence shows more than anything else and being able to walk proud and tall, aware of the person you are and reveling in it will grab you the best kind of attention possible.

5. Bring Out Those Shoes: It matters not if you are able to walk in them at all, let alone for long periods of time. The shoes will be grabbing as much attention as the coats and the dress, so you’d better be getting them out and start practicing. They will hurt, they will kill, but the reason for their existence is made clear here: they were made for the Fashion Week in Paris, Milan, London or New York. Add an insole for comfort or change into another pair of equally chic designer shoes that are more comfortable to walk in without whimpering after an hour or two, but know that these lovely things must be given their chance to shine bright against the backdrop of all that the fashion world stands for.

6. Accessories Are Important: Though we’ve asked you to put away your glasses while you watch the show, you can definitely be sporting them as you walk out or before you come in to the venue. Your bag is probably even more on display than the rest of you.


7. Bring a Friend: The fashion shows themselves may not be very long, but it can get awfully lonely sitting there alone, without a soul to talk to, whisper comments with or simply share a gesture of dislike for a heinous piece that somehow made it onto the runway but rather belongs back in the dumps. Humans are inherently social creatures and sharing your experience with another is infinitely more pleasurable than trying to enjoy it on your own. So bring a friend along, for sure!

8. Go for the Sophisticated Look: Too often women seem to think that the sluttier the look, the better it is. Showing off skin can be a chic and sophisticated attempt at looking your best as well, if done correctly. You want to show off that you are elegant by design and not an easy catch to rut with for the night. While the feminists might scream bloody murder at the thought of another woman speaking so, the truth is that the best outfits on the market are the ones with a good balance of skin and mystery. Even the latest sheer craze is complimented with high necks and long hems, effectively ensuring that a woman knows she looks amazing, exudes sensuality, but does not appear to be cheap in any respect. You are at a fashion show and not a frat party so it would do you good to look up the latest trends and really pick up pieces, which follow the designer hints.


9. Why Just Black? You do not need to just stick to a boring old black color, no matter how slimming it may be. Instead, add a pop of color to whatever you plan to wear, whether in the form of a belt, a hat, a handbag or switching up the skirts and the blouses. If you can walk into a room in a lovely kaleidoscope of colors and still exude confidence in yourself, you have really taken the leap necessary to attract the attention of those, who would help you in your career moves.

10. Don’t Forget Yourself: At the end of the day, you are you and nothing more or less than that. You may not even be anywhere near the limelight so breathe easy, relax your back, lift up your chin and stare straight ahead. Chances are that no one will know that you are wearing pieces from last year’s collections or that something doesn’t look as perfect on you as you may wish.

Etiquette tips for going to a fashion show also include: arriving with credentials ready for a smooth entrance, and bringing your ID, invitation and anything needed to prove that you are supposed to be there. There are no reserved seats so know you may be standing or waiting in a long line and it would be wise if you did not come late or else security will not let you in. Take your seats after the lights dim and make sure there is no texting, talking or taking photos during the show; if you must do so for work, then keep it as non-disruptive as possible. Give the show your full attention, as that is the best form of respect an attendee can bestow on the designer, and keep self-promotion to a minimum. Enjoy!