“Now it’s my turn, I take a deep breath and isolate my mind from all the agitation and chaos that’s around me. I feel a hand resting on my back and then a gentle nudge… I start walking. The light strikes my eyes and for a second it almost blinds me but soon after my sight adapts. In front of me I see the runway, a white long line of light and all rest immersed darkness. As I walk towards those blinding lights I can’t even catch a glimpse of all the people sitting around the stage probably staring at me. The music plays loud, surrounding me as I walk to its mesmerizing rhythm. In this precise moment I must admit: I feel like a star. This is what I love most about my job! Living that brief but intense moment in which I forget everything about the world around me, as if I were in a dream. No fear; just pride. Pride for being chosen to walk down that runway. Absolutely the best reward for all the time, effort and sacrifices made in order to get to live that special moment many girls dream of.
It all ends after 2 minutes, I go backstage and rush into my next attire in time for the second exit on stage. Behind the scenes it’s a real circus guys, it actually looks like one: people yelling, others running, models changing clothes all over the place contorting themselves to get in the new attires as soon as possible. Not to brag, but I am by now pretty good at it, all in record time! A quick retouch, hair and makeup and back out there on the catwalk. After three different attires it’s all done and magically the applauses burst in as a gratification for all the effort put into preparing the show. Finally, a breath, a sigh of relief, all went well and we girls were just perfect. Obviously after all this… a selfie with the designer is a must!”.
The “fashion show” represents a display of the completed collection which will go on sale after the event. The vast majority of fashion shows are organized during a “fashion week” even if it may occur for a designer to organize other shows outside fashion week for special occasions and sometimes in fascinating locations. Milan Fashion Week happens two times a year, at the end of February (autumn-winter collections) and at the end of the month of September (spring-summer collections). Other than Milano, there are major international markets where fashion shows are being organized, take for example New York, London and Paris. Of course you’ll see less important fashion weeks here and there but usually they don’t have the same media coverage as the main ones that we just mentioned.
The fashion show (when the models take the runway) is pretty short compared to the time put into the preparation of the event; in average a model has 3 or 4 exits each with a different piece of clothing from the collection. A fashion show generally takes under an hour to complete and requires the presence of 20 to 40 models. As we were saying, the pre-event phase is the long and complicated one because it has to do with “hair & makeup”: the girls have to be at the venue at least 4 to 5 hours before the fashion show in order for the hairstylists and makeup artists to be able to do their magic according to the precious guidelines they receive from the stylist or designer.
All items of clothing which we see on display during fashion week will most likely be available for sale only one year after. This happens because of fashion trends, which are always one year ahead.
How many times have we, regular people, dreamed of attending a fashion show? Unfortunately that’s really very difficult. This is because access to the shows is invite only and almost always you need to be part of the fashion world.