Since Day One of NZFW, we’ve been learning things, and these things have not been limited to the nature of Autumn/Winter collections 2017. I’m talking how to balance your coffee between two laptops and two cameras, how to make a half hour journey fit into ten minutes, and how to shoot in the same time frame. Needless to say, it’s been hectic, and the lessons are ongoing. Here’s where we’re at so far.
1. Respect the schedule. I hinted at this slightly in Back To Blak, my first post of NZFW. What ought to be noted is that while recognising the importance of this rule is easy, actually carrying it out is a lot more difficult. We’ve improved, however. Yesterday, we were only 15 minutes behind schedule as opposed to a near hour the first day. I can only hope this means today we’ll be on time – though this kind of sick optimism is probably what made us late in the first place. The point is, if you set a time, best to at least try stick to it. It’s the only thing keeping you accountable.
2. Keep in mind you need more than an hour to post, and get ready. Yesterday morning I left myself about 20 minutes to get ready after publishing and promoting a post. Granted I knew what I was wearing – but make-up and jewellery was still undecided and my hair was soaking wet. I’m unsure at which stage I decided 20 minutes was a suitable timeframe for solving this. Regardless of my tendency to work well under pressure – and of the fact that I did pull through on 20 minutes (word) – I’ve learnt from my ways and I’m up earlier this morning. I feel like it can only go uphill from here.
3. Charge your shit. @Tony Collins, this one is for you. We ought not to assume our phone will do fine on 50%. Occasionally it turns off at 35%, remember? When you’re going to be snapping every show and multiple times, I’ll tell you now, it’s going to die. Save yourself the stress and charge it. Charge your laptop too. Nothing worse than typing a post on your phone – it’s almost as bad as trying to navigate the WordPress app. Speaking of, my laptop is on 23% and it’s the beginning of the day. It seems tomorrow will have to be the day for redeeming this lesson.
4. Keep in mind it takes more than half an hour to get into Auckland City. Don’t pretend it doesn’t. There’s a bit of a trend appearing in this list, and it relates mostly to the underestimation of how much time things take. Essentially, it all comes back and hinders the likelihood we will complete rule number 1: to respect the schedule. Yesterday we made the again senseless assumption it’d take half an hour to get into the city. I can’t name one time I’ve actually made it in within this time frame, but it seemed doable when I laid it out on the schedule so it stuck. Of course, we were half an hour late.
5. Don’t ever assume public transport will be efficient – in any way, shape or form. You will hate it and remember why you stopped in the first place. You will also want to physically hurt all passengers who pass you and hit you with their bag as they get off. Regardless, you will respond to their apologies with “no problem”. In Wellington, we walk everywhere. It’s been a long time since I basked in the stress of public transport. Nonetheless, what better place to re-immerse yourself than in Auckland City: the place where bus drivers are dicks, buses are never on time, and when they are, drivers utilise their extra minutes by driving at 20km per hour. There’s never enough buses to equate for the amount of people who want to take them. Half of them don’t work properly and will fault during your journey. The ones that do work seem to drop off the system, and the face of the planet just before their arrival. They like to keep you on their toes; it’s just hilarious, really. Equate for the time to laugh.
6. Check the sim is in your camera. I was on the way to Viaduct Events Centre yesterday, and for some reason, I decided this would be a good time to check I had everything. Of course, I had forgotten what grants potentially the most important thing: the ability to use my camera. I had a quick freak-out, blamed Tony, considered the role of self in my own head, then, further blamed Tony. Fortunately, he does surprise you sometimes – often in the most unexpected of circumstances. He whipped out a spare sim, one that he apparently keeps in his wallet 24/7. It seems some of us are already on top of this lesson, and others could take some notes.
7. Eat the cheese and crackers in the media centre. It’s the only chance you’ll get. Okay, so not just the cheese and crackers. I’m talking free food at any opportunity you get. Except for the apples – don’t bother with the apples. Yesterday in the media room, there was a platter of cheeses and crackers, dips and spreads. Initially, everyone was polite and pretending they weren’t that hungry. Minutes later, people took 7 crackers to their desk, announcing “I haven’t eaten all day.” For media, it’s not a choice thing. We ain’t on no detox diet. We want the burger, we just don’t have time to go get the burger. When you do get a chance to eat, you don’t hold back. Instead, you prepare for hibernation.
8. Don’t have a cold during Fashion Week. Period. This is a lesson I probably won’t be learning from until next year. Let me tell you now, there’s nothing that takes a bigger hit at your sense of cool than blowing your nose. I’m not even sure it’s that much of an issue to others, especially if you do so in the confines of the media centre – but it certainly doesn’t aid in your own view of self. Every time I’ve blown my nose, I’ve lost all my foundation in it’s vicinity, leaving me with an unattractively red nose (actually, I’m not sure when this would be attractive). Perhaps if I was Rihanna, I could work this. But I’m not, so I just look weird. It’s not fashion-y to do a nose check. But if you have to, my advice is keep it subtle and keep it controlled. Mostly though, just make sure you’re not sick for Fashion Week. It’s going to save you a lot of stress, time and tissues.
9. If there’s a fire drill at the after party, down your champagne. Potentially the most important message of all. Last night at the AO after-party, the fire drill went off, and after everyone stood looking bewildered for a few minutes, we actually had to clear out momentarily. We were all standing on the side of the street, sipping on our drinks (we’re humans, of course we took them), when we overheard the staff discussing the liquor licence, and the fact we were, well, breaking it. The rate at which I drank that glass of champagne when I heard them say, “should we take them back?”. I joked with the group, “sorry, did you mean take it back like…”, and tipped the last bit into my mouth. I wasn’t in a position to kid myself. I’m a student; money doesn’t grow on trees. My advice is take what you paid for (and take the extras too). Oh, and if you bought a vodka soda for $16 like my friend, down that even faster. Down the ice too. You goddamn spent $8 on it.
10. Remember who you are. Even at events whereby most people are somebodies, perhaps even you are, don’t forget what’s important. You’re a humble, kind, and fun person. Stay true to that. You’ll stand out for the better – and encourage that people do the same. Last night, there were some kids at Snapdragon (where the after-party was located) who I presume were related to the designer. I asked one of the boys to dance and anyway, he got all his siblings involved and as it turns out, they had the greatest rhythm I’ve ever seen in (white) kids. They were dabbing and break-dancing and doing the splits all across the dance floor. I imagine if I was to do the same, I would have been escorted to the door. The point is, no one is too old or too cool to dance with kids. It was a highlight of the night.
And that was just Day Two. Will keep you updated on progress (if such occurs).
Photos: Two Dark Coffees