Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be at a fashion week? Not as a model/fashion editor/makeup artist or anyone important enough who attends all the fashion shows but as an amateur model/street style photographer? You probably haven’t because there’s not many people who think about these kinds of things. But if you have, I have perfect news for you! Here’s my very own experience of my 3rd fashion week as amateur model/street style photographer.
I wouldn’t even call myself a street style photographer, I don’t even have a professional camera or photoshop to edit my pictures. I just use some filters but that’s the way I like my pictures hence the label amateur. I just like taking pictures of models and sharing them with their fans. And the best way how to meet models is outside of fashion shows. My first two fashion weeks (shortly fw) were back in 2010 in Paris and 2011 in Milan. Now I decided to visit Milan again (mostly because of Versace and their stellar casts over the past few seasons). This time I was a little bit worried because fashion weeks has changed so much, it’s crazier than it was before, mostly because of all the instagirls and their young followers waiting outside the shows. Just look at the picture above and the amount of fans waiting for Liu Wen. This time around I was alone, I didn’t know anyone personally except some familiar faces who run now famous street style blogs.
So how does a normal fw day looks like for a street style photographer? You wait and wait and wait outside of the fashion show venues. You wait for famous people (celebrities, bloggers, fashion editors) to shoot them before the show and for models after the show. To be honest I’m mostly interested in models so I don’t care about all the circus that happens before the shows start (except there is some famous person I like). Fashion shows are never on time, they are usually 15 up to 30 minutes late, so it’s perfectly ok to arrive to the venue later. Then you wait about 20 minutes for the show to end. Models usually come out of the backstage exit. I absolutely hate it when there are two backstage exits, then it’s easy to miss a lot of models. Some well-known photographers are luckier because they are often invited to watch the shows or at least go to backstage and take pictures there. Most of the photographers are paid so it’s their job to wait outside and take pictures of people, some are just running street style blogs and either make profit out of their hobby or post pictures with the prospect of becoming a famous street style photographer one day.
Anyway, let’s go back to my story. I will not write about every little detail of my fashion week trip (because I don’t remember it, it was almost a year ago). Just some important highlights. If I remember correctly I went to one or two shows on wednesday, I’m sure I missed Gucci because I was late and I accidently took the wrong subway direction so I just skipped it. I was waiting long time for the last show on my schedule which was Roberto Cavalli. I was excited about that one because my favourite model Natasha Poly was invited as a guest. Before the show started I was alone, hungry, thirsty and cold so I went to have some tea. Very clever of me to take a coat to northern Italy in february when you spend around 10 hours outside doing basically nothing, at least this time I had more comfy shoes. Note to myself: bring a winter jacket next time! I was still cold so I decided to go to some shops. As I was trying some clothes on I took this picture beacause it’s always funnier when you take selfies in fitting rooms, isn’t it?
The time flies like crazy when you are shopping so it was about time to go to Cavalli show. I was lucky to meet Natasha but didn’t get the chance to take a picture with her (I already have one from 6 years ago so no big deal). I also took some pictures of her but they are all crappy cause I don’t have a professional camera and when it’s the nightime the pictures are not the best. There were so many people that it was hard to take pictures, I should have arrived sooner probably…Jon Kortajarena, one of my favourite male models, also attended the show so I was happy to see him too.
THE MOST IMPORTANT PART OF MY TRIP WAS ABOUT TO HAPPEN! It just deserved caps lock 😀
While waiting for the show to end I started to talk to one girl. I saw her before at another show talking to some other girl. We found out we have a lot in common. We are both huge model fans. This girl is no one else than my beloved friend Roxane. Roxane is from China and she was studying in Paris at the time. She took this lovely photo of me and her favourite model Vanessa Moody after the show.
We exchanged contacts and Roxane introduced me to Patricia the following day. Patricia is from Italy and she lives in Milan. So I was not alone after all. I made two amazing friends and we were touring the fashion shows together. We decided to make a fashion blog together. After I arrived home from Milan, Patricia set up the webpage, instagram and facebook page for our fashion blog. It’s called POSEFORMEE so do not hesitate to check it out. Check Roxane’s and Patricia’s instagrams as well. Thanks to this idea I decided to make a travel blog too and share my travels with my friends, family and everyone else who would be interested. I created this blog sometime in february of 2016 and it took me almost one year to finally write an article. I hope the second blog post won’t take that long…
The highlight of this fashion week was supposed to be Versace show and it truly was, at least for me. We arrived three hours before the show was supposed to start in order to see the models coming in. We were not the only ones there. There were already some streetstyle photographers waiting out there and a little crowd of model fans. We saw some big models, I immediately posted on the fashion spot which models I had seen because I’m not the only model fan out there. I was extrremely lucky to meet one of my favourite models ever who is rarely walking shows nowadays and whom I thought I would never ever see in real life. It’s Julia Stegner who I’m talking about and I was so excited to see her that I acted like some crazy little fangirl and embarassed myself in front of Phil Oh and Tommy Ton (well-known street style photographers) and god knows who else. But I couldn’t care less.
We still had a lot of time so went to have some dinner. We went to some pizza place near Versace venue. Thanks to instagram and tfs we already knew the whole cast of the show. Some of my favourite girls were there and some girls which I hadn’t seen before and was excited to meet. I was looking forward to Malgosia Bela, Kasia Struss (I was looking forward to brunette Kasia but she went blonde again before the show…), one of my new favourites Rianne Van Rompaey, then Natasha and Caroline Brasch Nielsen but I missed both of them. It was crazy outside Versace because Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner and Taylor Hill were there. I had no idea those girls have so many fans, mostly teenagers. I almost got killed by crazy fans when they were following Taylor, then Kendal’s car almost ran me over. And I thought I’m a little bit crazy 🙂
After the show ended one woman asked me what camera I was using. I was certainly not expecting that question. She told me it looked very chic and cute and asked me if the pictures were of good quality. I told her I was satisfied and the camera is excellent, especially during the day. Ok, that was the Versace experience but I should write less model nonsense cause no one would read it 🙂
Another highlight of this fw trip came on my last day which was saturday. We went with Roxane to Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini show which was one of the last ones that day. (I remembered that beautiful venue from six years ago at Missoni show, especially the models doing the finale walk outside.) We were lucky enough to get inside. Our first real show, we didn’t have any invites and it was one of the bigger ones, some well-known faces were walking the show. We were standing at the back but still a great experience. For me it was hard to take pictures because of all the spotlights. I’m still no expert in using my camera with such lights and my phone wasn’t helping.
After the show we went to one smaller show and decided to have some food after. We went to an all you can eat sushi restaurant. I was all wet because it was raining and I didn’t have an umbrella and my comfy shoes were not that great in the heavy rain. Funny story about my umbrella: I borrowed one from my hostel, I put it on the floor while I was taking the picture above and someone took it. I was pissed at all those fashion week goers and especially at the person who stole my umbrella, my umbrella that wasn’t even mine 😀 So we found a perfect posh sushi place (just because they had a Chanel ribbon on one of their plants, haha) with delicious food. We decided to make this our “end of fashion week tradition”.
I was so full after that dinner (and I had eaten next to nothing during that day) that I didn’t need to eat until after I landed in Morocco the following day. But that’s for another story… Now you can see why this trip to Milan for fashion week was so important to me and why it had to be the subject of my first blog post. The idea of this blog was born together with the idea of our poseformee site. Let’s say it was a groundbreaking trip for me.