The truth about Buffalo Fashion Week


Last week, downtown Buffalo was nearly unrecognizable.  Buffalo Fashion Week transformed the city previously dubbed “least fashionable” into something magical.  I had the opportunity to attend the Walden Galleria Mall Show, Mansion on Deleware Boutique Show, and Main Event as press!  I met some fabulous up and coming designers as well as already established ones (take Project Runway Season 10 4th runner up Christopher Palu for example!!).  I even saw E.J Manuel, Quarterback for the Buffalo Bills.  Did you have the opportunity to mingle with some of Buffalo’s elite and fashion forward?  I’m thrilled to say that I did.

Press Conference with Christopher Palu, buffalo fashion week

Press Conference with Christopher Palu

ej manuel, buffalo fashion week

I sat front row, and so did EJ Manuel!!!

 

I must be completely honest and say that September 19-26 (BFW) was not all flowers and rainbows though.  The Mall Show was a total flop, communication with the people behind the scenes left a lot to be desired, and the Boutique Show started at 8 (2 hours later than press was informed), and then only lasted 30 minutes…  I may not be the Buffalo News, but I still consider my time valuable and I had a lot of homework to do (#collegekidproblems).

The good news is: unlike the Buffalo News, I don’t have to be as concerned with making BFW look good, I can just be honest.

CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM:

*The mall show should not occur for <10 minutes every hour for 4 hours.  If this is going to be the style of the show, you will lose your audience and they will leave (like fellow blogger Meg and I did).

*The boutiques and vendors at the Boutique Show were fantastic, but press had to stand behind the audience, and was given no real direction.  It looks unprofessional.

*There was a bar, but no free food or drinks available at the Boutique Show to appease the overpaying audience and underpaid press.  This should be changed in the future.

*I know what being a volunteer is like, so please do not embarrass them as well as yourself by leaving them ill-informed.  Volunteers need to have basic knowledge: where the bathrooms are, if guests can re-enter the event, etc.

*Do not treat your volunteers as if they are beneath you.  It’s slimy. (Note: also do not treat your volunteers as beneath you until you find out they are press)

*Send out a memo of what your volunteers and press are expected to wear:  I had no idea about wearing all black, I was just fortunate enough to guess correctly.

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*At the Main Event I had to endure the embarrassment of not having prepared interview questions because originally I was supposed to volunteer.  This “miscommunication” required that I become extremely innovative, quickly.  Also, I was not provided with a list of designers so that I could research beforehand, therefore I had only basic knowledge of “who’s who”.

So that other press/bloggers do not have to endure the same humiliation, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE inform them in advance about where they will be, who they will meet, etc.

Maybe, I’m blunt and “they” won’t want to hear it, but you (preppy readers) deserve to know about how fashion week really went.

I know that there is always chaos in fashion, and that this is only Buffalo’s 5th year, but hopefully next year my constructive criticism will help the rest of the week’s events to improve.  The Main Event at the Statler City was well worth going to.  I sat front row for a few shows (you can call me Buffalo’s Anna Wintour from now on -LOL), had VIP access, and met other people active in Buffalo’s tiny fashion industry.  I hope that my commentary does not limit me from having that opportunity in 2014, but I simply could not leave these comments out of my post and feel authentic.

Take a look at some photos from the Main Event (9.26):

The Newspaper Dress, buffalo fashion week

The Newspaper Dress

Sitting front row!, buffalo fashion week

Sitting front row!

Maria Allen's Balloon Dress, buffalo fashion week

Maria Allen’s Balloon Dress

So many unconventional designs!, buffalo fashion week

So many unconventional designs!

Maria Allen's Cup Dress, buffalo fashion week

Maria Allen’s Cup Dress

buffalo fashion week

That model is probably still scrubbing gold paint off.

 

Franci Jewelry designer Nicole has plans to attend NYFW & LAFW!, buffalo fashion week

Franci Jewelry designer Nicole has plans to attend NYFW & LAFW!

There were some romantic looks mixed in., marc ella new york, buffalo fashion week

Marc Ella NY brough some romantic looks into the show.

marc ella new york, fashion week, buffalo fashion week

Check out MENY Designer Brenda Liz in the same design as on the runway!

Some of the press team!, buffalo fashion week

Can’t forget about the press team!

 

All in all, I am happy that I was involved with BFW.  It was a learning experience where I got to connect with some wonderful people.

Have you ever been involved with a small city’s fashion week?

Fashion Events in Buffalo, NY


When you don’t live in New York City or London, sometimes the fashion world can feel so far away.  I attended my transfer orientation at the University at Buffalo today, and although it was a great experience, I bonded with an orientation leader over the lack of fashion available in Buffalo. Then I started thinking.. if you’re willing to hunt, there are quite a few fashion events in Buffalo, NY for the fall:

Marilyn

I don’t know how you feel about museums, but I have always had mixed feelings about walking through a giant place filled with old stuff… I have to be REALLY  interested in that old stuff.  I would use the word timeless instead of old to describe Miss. Marilyn Monroe, and I would say I’m just the other side of obsessed instead of interested when it comes to her appearance and apparel.

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The Marilyn exhibit at the Burchfield Penney in Buffalo, NY features pictures of the amazing Marilyn Monroe.  Her amazing photographer Douglas Kirkland, has also captured images of the beautiful Elizabeth Taylor and Marlene Dietrich.  My grandma is a docent at the museum and gave me a little info about the exhibit, but I haven’t had the chance to come visit myself.  It is only going to be featured until September 8th though, so this is certainly on my to-do list.  On August 22nd from 7:30-9, for a nominal fee of $10, the art center is screening one of the many films staring Miss. Monroe, “The Misfits”.

Buffalo Fashion Week

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  It may not be New York Fashion Week, but Buffalo Fashion Week is inspired by the big leagues and is going to be just as fabulous.  Since I have the honor of volunteering as well as blogging about some of these events, I cannot lie, this is shameless self promotion: but I promise it won’t let you down.  There have been multiple casting calls, some amazing local sponsors, and the most fashion forward in the city giving there all to make Buffalo Fashion Week amazing.  Make sure to mark your calendars if you are a fashionista: September 19-26 should be all booked.  If you’re super cool, you should buy VIP tickets here.  Stay tuned for the Boutique and Swimwear show tickets, being sold shortly.

Fashion WNY Meeting

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  After one of my many #blogchats on twitter the other night, I found the site meetup.com.  If there is a topic you are interested in, you can find people to discuss it over coffee with at scheduled dates.  One of the first (as far as I know) fashion meet ups will be at Spot Coffee (on Deleware and Chippewa in Buffalo) on August 30th at 7pm.  Come share your ideas about how we can make Buffalo more fashion forward and meet some of the city’s most stylish people.

Tony Walker & Co Back to School Event

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If you’d like to get into the fashion mood BEFORE the fashion meetup on August 30th, make sure to come to Tony Walker and Co in Williamsville for their fashion show and a free makeover from 5-7!  If you call in advance, you can also get free brow shaping and kiehls facials.  The first 100 guests to RSVP will receive exclusive gift bags.  My fellow Buffalo preps, you are not going to want to miss their Vineyard Vines Fall collection.

Sarah Danielle Fall Preview Event

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Be the first to see all new collections from Collective Concepts, Gentle Fawn, Alternative Apparel and more, at Sarah Danielle Boutique!  They have a wide variety of styles, including preppy!  There will be various vendors, free food and champagne, as well as exclusive discounts during the event.  To get a sneak peak at what else Sarah Danielle has to offer, check out their website.

Wedding Fair

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  If you are a Buffalo Bride to be, you cannot miss this event.  The Buffalo Bridal Association Wedding Fair is held August 25th at Salvatore’s Italian Gardens Restaurant.  I am volunteering, come visit me!  The tickets are free and the event includes runway shows as well as access to everything you could want for your wedding (photographers, venders, event planners, etc).  Find out more information here.

Fashion Show at the Boulevard Mall

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  On September 7th (my birthday!) at 1pm, the Boulevard Mall in Amherst, NY is holding a fashion show.  Stores such as Macy’s, Gap, and Francesca’s Collections will have models rocking the latest fall trends and homecoming fashions.  This is a casual fashion oriented event that will give you even more reasons to shop -as if you needed them. Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital Woman’s Board Fall Fashion Show

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This is a fundraiser held on October 26th at Salvatore’s Italian Gardens Restuarant to sponsor the hospital.  As more information becomes available, it will be provided.

Hey Buffalonians, do you know of any other fashion events this fall?