Wednesday, September 16, 2009
FASHION'S NIGHT OUT REPORT
New York City; September 10, 2009.
It is safe to say that I have now been in Manhattan for the premier of two very Vogue events. One, Teen Vogue's Fashion University in October of 2006 (see earlier posts). The second, and much more epic, was Fashion's Night Out on September 10. Hosted by Vogue, with the participation and help of the CFDA, FNO proved to be one big fashion party sprawling the streets of New York from Barney's to Bleeker Street. Most stores stayed open until at least 11 pm, designers made in-store appearances and celebrity appearances caused fans to crowd store doors.
The vibe was exciting. There were DJs and drinks, ladies in Louboutains and happy fashionistas everywhere. The idea behind the night was for the world to START SHOPPING. A successful night of increased sales at some stores, and pure fun at others acted as a green light for consumers to start spending once more. It is time for retail to smile again and focus on the positive. Thanks to Vogue, hopefully this idea will resignate throughout the industry.
After flying in 30 min prior to the start of the event, my night started out at a failed attempt to catch a glimpse of Tommy Hilfiger at Macy's Herald Square. I then wandered into Nine West in Rockefeller Plaza where I was greeted by a special wine and apple cocktail as I previewed their new fall boot collection (the brown leather equestrian-inspired ones are my number one fall must-have). I then hurried to Saks Fifth Avenue flagship store to meet (in my opinion) the best makeup producer, Bobbi Brown. The entire first floor of Saks was filled to capactiy with models walking around looking fabulous, makeup consultants giving fall fashion tips, and shoppers hoping to see Justin Timberlake at 8:30. I got some pictures and headed off to Barney's.
I can honestly say I have never seen so many people consuming, not softgoods, but champagne, than at Barney's New York on September 10. The demand for some bubbly was higher on the 4th floor than for shoes at Barney's! However, the pure mob of people around Manolo is a testament to the quality of his footwear and the impact he has made on the luxurious shoe market.
The shoe lounge at BNY can't really compare to Payless down the street, unless of course Project Runway winner Christian Siriano is making an in-store appearance. His recent collaboration with the moderately priced retailer had PR fans lined up almost a block down the street to hear the word "fierce". Although I will admit, the line to see the Victoria's Secret Angel's stretched 2 blocks deep across the street, sorry Christian. I waited for a half hour before I realized my time was better spent elsewhere and headed downtown.
Downtown Bleeker street was just as exciting. I showed up as the SATC 2 crew was cleaning up the trailer from filming that day and made my way to the Ralph Lauren store where Camille LaBelle was wandering around. Preppy NYC tweens waited anxiously for Blake Lively to appear later in the night. Sick of waiting, I bought an FNO t-shirt with all proceeds going towards the September 11 memorial fund and made my way across the street to Cynthia Rowley's showroom truck parked outside the store. Trying to accomplish the night from 6:00-midnight (I wore heels the entire night) on only 2 hours of sleep I began to wear down. My night ended in the meatpacking district where I really hoped to see DVF, Tory Burch, and Kate Hudson at Stella McCartney but I missed them all by about 20 minutes.
I must say after a month in the midwest, it felt good to be back in the city. And if there is an FNO part 2 next year, you know where I will be.