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Monday, September 27, 2010

Fashion Week Fall 2010 – A Brief Return

On September 10th a couple weeks ago, I headed straight from class down to the Indianapolis International Airport to catch my flight to New York City. Upon accepting my internship offer at Cynthia Rowley this summer, I agreed to make myself available to work during our runway show this fall. The descent in proved very surreal, for after spending a whole year there only to return to Indiana still had me in culture shock – so this trip was like returning home, really. To save money, instead of taking a cab I took a bus to the subway; from that point on I felt as if I’d never left.
I arrived down at Heather Duge’s place in the financial district (Heather is a former Purdue Apparel Tech student,) and called the design office, expecting to be called in to work for last minute hand-stitching. To my surprise, I was not needed. Amy Morris (a fellow Apparel Tech student) and I decided to take advantage of this free opportunity and enjoy Fashion’s Night Out, an annual event to promote the fashion industry and raise funds for the September 11 Memorial Fund. In a nutshell, we hit up Fifth Avenue, Herald Square, and Soho, in the process meeting Jessica Stam (pictured), Paige Adams-Gellar of Paige Denim, and the band members of Carolina Liar. It was an exciting, memorable evening.
Onto the fashion, though. Cynthia Rowley’s show was scheduled to go off at 11 AM on September 11, 2010. I arrived at Lincoln Center at 9:30 to assist with set up. The venue was massive – a large entrance with the “Mercedes Benz Fashion Week” sign faced an open concrete square complimented by a fountain and a small park with benches. I made my way around to the back and found our appropriate tent, obtained my pass, and worked my way to where the models were getting hair and make-up done. Everything ran very smoothly, about fifteen minutes behind, but no disasters occurred. I fell in love with the models’ poppy red lips and enlarged barrettes clipped in their hair. A volunteer and I were assigned to the very first model (pictured-putting socks on). She only had one change, so the only difficulty was making sure makeup didn’t get on the garments – we used a silk cloth over her head to manage this. Unfortunately there were a few minor scares backstage. The model next to us couldn’t get her zipper up, and once we helped and succeeded, it separated. Hand tacking and strategic walking saved this on her and a couple other models. Other than that, the show was a huge success.

It all happened very quickly, lasting only a quarter of an hour. All the months and hours of preparation into fifteen minutes. But entirely worth it. The world now gets to view the collection, become inspired, and appreciate truly artistic design.

I spent the last day and a half sourcing fabric for my senior collection, in the process meeting and conversing with Valerie Mayen from this season’s Project Runway. As I toted my bags of fabric down the streets of Manhattan on Sunday afternoon, the light rain had cleared leaving slightly overcast skies visible through the rooftops. I stopped for a bit in Chelsea district and visited my favorite cupcake place, Billy’s. As I walked, I soaked it in, reminisced, then fished my Metrocard out, sighed, and descended towards the subway. New York is a stressful, yet wonderful whirlwind, and though I craved to just go sit along the Hudson one more time, I knew I had a true home to return to. Space to create my collection and valued relationships with others – that can’t be beat.


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