Fashion month was once a whirlwind of affairs, dominated by networking, outfit changes, celebrities, personalities, events and paparazzi shots. The London scene was once alive, kicking and roaring. Do you miss the buzz? Would you still complain about tired feet and sleepless nights due to London Fashion Week preparation if you could turn back time? I would do it all over again. Seriously? You may ask. However, the answer is absolute, yes. I loved the spontaneity of meeting random people and long-lost acquaintances. The excitement of rushing from one show to the next was an adrenaline teaser
In retrospect, I poured my heart and soul into organising show invites and ensured that my LFW schedule was intact ahead of the five-day fashion marathon. On the contrary, the stringent operation of exclusive guest lists and those dreaded words “we are at full capacity” in response to a request email for a fashion show invite were very soul-destroying. I used to think that I was not good enough upon rejection and that the world of fashion was, perhaps, too exclusive for my raw personality.
Celebrities or influencers with a following of over 100K were cherry-picked and occupied the first and second row. My platform at the time, however, was evolving but mainly characterised by a loyal following who trusted my voice. The latter did not suffice. Acceptance and recognition — in the world of fashion — appeared and still does to some degree to be heavily influenced by a number — the size of one’s following — or public status instead of genuine support. The reality check is such that the pandemic has forced us to become more supportive of one another. Inclusivity is far more important than exclusivity. No matter how small or big, an act of support can make a difference, especially in hard times.
On a positive note, I have fond memories of when the British Fashion Council invited me to speak at London Fashion Week’s opening ceremony. I chose to talk about dressing for one’s body type. Buyers, press and other industry speakers enjoyed freshly-squeezed orange juice and warm croissants during the breakfast presentation.
Appointed to the residential stylist’s role at London Fashion Weekend, avid shoppers and die-hard trendsetters would seek my advice during prehistoric times when the Natural History Museum hosted LFW. Their innocent gazes suggested a need for style guidance and reassurance while they listened to my advice attentively. Such times represent the earlier stages of my career as a personal stylist from which I have evolved gratefully. I miss the fashion scene. The runway lights, cameras, and action will return. Stay safe and stylish in the meantime.
Written by @styleiconnat | Shutterstock Editorial – Photography by Steven Coke