New York City’s hottest sample sales are nothing short of pandemonium. Various fashion blogs feature weekly reviews of the hottest sample sales. They’re full of pictures and prices, providing our beloved readers with an accurate opinion and description of the sale at hand, exhibiting sufficient reason to attend or skip the sale at hand, as to not waste their time. It sounds like a pretty simple job, right? Wrong. It may sound fun to shop for a living, and don’t get me wrong – it is! – but with all good must come bad, and it’s about time we point it out for no other reason than to give fashionistas a behind the scenes glimpse to an average work day for a New York City sample sale reviewer.
For well over two years I have been covering sample sales, visiting every variety, shape and size sale you could possibly dream up. I can easily predict the crowd, selection, prices, and overall environment before even stepping foot into the mayhem.
However, despite the crazed fashionistas and deal hungry shoppers, who merely foam at the mouth for an 80% off pair of heels, the biggest grief givers within sample sales are the organizers and employees themselves. This isn’t the case for all organizers mind you (namely 260 Fifth – they are by far the most professional), but as for the other half, they seem to get their kicks by barking at shoppers, forcing them to stand in inclement weather for hours at a time, being inconsiderate with the prized designer bags, laptops, and leather jackets that customers are required to check upon entering, and perhaps worst of all, placing dressing rooms off limits, forcing shoppers to strip down to their unmentionables as they try on discounted jeans, blouses, and well, even bathing suits. What else are they supposed to do given the no refund or exchange policy? After all these years the sample sale has been eternalized as a hubbub of rabid and crazed shoppers who are itching for deals, but are the organizers actually the ones to blame for inducing this behavior?
Most sales also have a strict “no photography” policy, and balk when they see journalist like myself scribbling away in her notebook. Perhaps they hope that without press, a mystique will be added to the sale and in the end draw in more curious customers. At one recent sale in particular–which shall remain nameless– they were not allowing press inside. Being that The Stylish City is relied on for delivering same day reviews, no one was going to stop me from entering this sale. Well, aside from the estimated 2.5-hour wait that is. Using my vast sample sale knowledge I found a loophole. There was about 5-minutes before the doors opened to the public, and boxes of merchandise were still being wheeled in through their loading dock. Sneaky me tip toed toward the side entrance and made my best attempt at “blending in” with the deliverymen. Walking slowly behind them I quickly ducked into a public bathroom before being snagged by security. While inside the restroom, I impatiently stared at my watch until opening time struck. As I heard the herds role in, I quickly scampered inside, successfully entering the hottest sample sale of the week without even having to wait a minute.
It’s true, sample sale shoppers can be rude, grabby, and exhibitionists. They don’t care who is in their way of a $20 Alexander Wang tee-shirt and they will most likely risk jail time for the discount. But as I mentioned, aside from the rabid fashionistas, the employees are those who immediately come to mind when envisioning the negative side to sample sale shopping.
By Caitlin Colford
Posted by Caitlin Colford at 01:30 PM
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Monday night’s red carpet at the 2013 CFDA Awards looked particularly fabulous. From fashionable veterans such as Ralph Lauren to Oscar de la Renta and other notable attendants, including Hillary Clinton and Miranda Kerr, pretty much every single person looked divine.
Whether you tuned in to watch it yourself or are reading up on all the little details now, here are the six things you need to know about the CFDA.
1. The 2013 CFDA Award Winners (Obviously!)
In case you missed it, the winners were as follows:
Womenswear Designer of the Year: Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez for Proenza Schouler
Menswear Designer of the Year: Thom Browne
Accessories Designer of the Year: Phillip Lim for 3.1 Phillip Lim
As for the Swarovski Awards for Emerging Talent, those awards were handed out to the following up-and-comers:
Swarovski Womenswear Designer of the Year: Max Osterweis and Erin Beatty for Suno
Swarovski Menswear Designer of the Year: Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne for Public School
Swarovski Accessories Designer of the Year: Pamela Love
The lifetime achievement award went to Vera Wang.
2. The CFDA Has Been Around for Over 50 Years
Yep, you read that right. The CFDA has now existed for over half a century. This not-for-profit organization, started by publicist Eleanor Lambert in 1962, has some serious roots and it isn’t going anywhere for a long time.
3. Fashion Made for Fashionable People
CFDA stands for “Council of Fashion Designers of America” and its annual award ceremony is considered the Oscars of the fashion world.
“Nominations for each award category are submitted by the CFDA Fashion Awards Selection Committee, made up of the 400+ members of the CFDA, along with top fashion retailers, journalists, and stylists. The nominees, as well as recipients of the honorary awards, are ratified by the CFDA Board of Directors,” notes the CFDA website.
4. The CFDA Awards Are Kind of a Big Deal
While the CFDA Awards began as small-scale, intimate event specifically for those in the fashion industry, it’s since become a much more widely covered — and attended — event. From celebrities to debutantes to political figures, everyone shows up to the CFDA Awards.
5. Diane von Furstenberg is the CFDA President
Fashion veteran Diane von Furstenberg, who won the CFDA Lifetime Achievement Award in 2005, currently serves as the CFDA president. She took on that role in 2009 and works with Steven Kolb, the Chief Executive Officer.
6. The CFDA Mission
According to the CFDA website, their mission is:
- To further the position of Fashion design as a recognized branch of American art and culture;
- To advance artistic and professional standards within the Fashion industry;
- To establish and maintain a code of ethics and practices of mutual benefit in professional, public, and trade relations;
- To promote and improve public understanding and appreciation of the Fashion arts through leadership in quality and taste;
- To create partnerships which lead to collaborative design opportunities for our Members;
- To support the overall growth of American Fashion as a global industry.
By Wendy Rose Gould
Posted by Wendy Rose Gould at 01:20 PM
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As an Upper East Side Ambassador, I had to report on the blizzard. I don’t know how badly it snowed in other neighborhoods, but I have to tell you, it’s pretty quiet here. It is kind of Christmas and Valentine’s Day in one. Enjoy the pics, and have a great weekend.
Posted by Mirela Gluck at 01:53 PM
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Today is the official start to the Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week for Fall 2013 Collections! Wow, okay, not excited? I can almost hear your “over-it” sighs proceeded by an exaggerated eye rolling. I know, I know, another year, another fashion week. You are fans of fashion, heck, you live for fashion, but you feel like a kid during recess who is left out of an exciting game of kickball. Year after year you read reviews straight from the runways, drool over photos, and watch six-foot tall models from around the globe strut around your city like they own the place. There are fashion events everywhere and you are not invited. I get it. But fashionistas do not give up! Do not throw away the opportunity to be ahead of the trends and to keep up on all the happenings of your favorite designers simply because you feel left out! Seize the opportunities that this year’s fashion week is presenting to us! With more public events plus the ability to now stream runway shows live online, you will have the same perks that Anna Wintour has! Well, almost. Ok, not really. But let’s pretend because this is your ultimate chance to get out your notebooks, jot down your favorite looks and participate in the fashion gossip that is buzzing around on the web, whether it be on a message board or your own fashion blog, as well as talk shop in person with fellow fashionistas at fun and free events.
Fashion Week Kick-Off!
Tonight is the night to schmooze as you sip champagne with industry insiders and celebrities alike. Head over to XL Nightclub for the Official NY Fashion Week Kickoff Party when doors open at 8pm to assure entry and to grab yourself a prime time spot in order to people watch and see which fashion maven you can talk up in order to score an invitation to the upcoming week’s runway shows.
THURSDAY, February 7th — Fashion Week Day One
This year, Lincoln Center expects to see more than 100,000 people in their Damrosch Park during eight days of fashion. Many fashion lovers will camp outside the invitation only shows to simply people watch and spy on what the who’s-who of fashion is wearing. But it’s too cold for that this year. You, my friend have an invitation of your own this time around. Such sites as newyork.mbfashionweek.com and livestream.com, as well as designer’s respective official sites, will offer a live view of their individual runway shows.
From here on out, follow the links we provide for shows that we recommended in order to snag a front row seat to all the fashionable action.
FRIDAY, February 8th — Fashion Week Day Two
In between live streams, head down to Bloomingdale’s in SoHo to shop brand new ready-to-wear collections from noted emerging designers. Designers featured in this one-time showcase include Aristotle Rosario, Daniella Kallmeyer and Sunghee Bang. Pair your hot new clothing with accessories from on the rise jewelers Anna Coroneo, Laura Wass and Leonard Bridges. All designers noted above were the winners selected from Bloomingdale’s B Seen program in January.
SATURDAY, February 9th — Fashion Week Day Three
The popular Nolita restaurant Ken & Cook will play home to a special event titled “A Night of Art Meets Fashion,” which is hosted by Amy Poliakoff from Bravo’s “Gallery Grils.” This pop-up is a mash-up of stunning pieces by talented artists and designers alike. All artwork, by both established and upcoming artists, will be on sale during a fun cocktail reception starting at 9pm. Also available for purchase will be unique fashion items from Fashion Week designers during a lively fashion show presentation at 11pm. Proceeds will benefit Women’s Cancer Research and the Hurricane Sandy Relief Kitchen.
SUNDAY, February 10th — Fashion Week Day Four
MONDAY, February 11th — Fashion Week Day Five
Monday evening in the West Village brings us another fun and fashionable benefit. From 7pm-10pm Ayza Wine and Chocolate Bar (our two favorite things) will celebrate Fashion Week as they host “Sip IN Style,” and evening full of live jazz music, fashion inspired cocktails, and raffles for designer handbags and jewelry, all benefiting the New York City based charity Dress For Success. Simply RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org to get your name on the list.
TUESDAY, February 12th — Fashion Week Day Six
WEDNESDAY, February 13th — Fashion Week Day Seven
THURSDAY, February 14th — Fashion Week Day Eight
Happy Valentine’s Day! Unfortunately neither Ralph Lauren nor Calvin Klein wish to be our valentine and in turn are not offering live streams of their runway shows. That’s fine. We’ll just have to stalk to trades for reviews of this one.
So until the next go-round of live streams and fashionable events, Bye Bye Bye Fashion Week! It’s been fun!
By Caitlin Colford
Posted by Caitlin Colford at 12:00 AM
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