Dallas Owners and Buyers Reveal Fashion Week Game Plans

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The countdown is on.

Come February 7th, the world’s most stylish people will descend upon New York City for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week. During this twice-yearly event, top designers present their latest creations to thousands of editors, photographers, and guests. As new trends are unveiled, celebrities preen and champagne is poured — but store owners and buyers are hard at work.

No, Fashion Week is not jut a glamorous party. It is also the time for those people in the industry who stock stores and boutiques with the looks we love to make lots of hard decisions. What colors, silhouettes, shapes, textures, fabrics, and accessories will they invest in for the season to come? The importance of this job cannot be overstated or under appreciated.  Without these talented folks, we would not look and feel as good as we do.

We talked to four such Dallas experts to get a deeper understanding of Fashion Week culture. Their jobs, although fabulous, require stamina, creativity, and good old-fashioned hard work. Read on for their insider perspectives:

 

 

 

Brian Bolke
Owner and Buyer, Forty Five Ten

 

What kind of homework do you do before leaving for Fashion Week? 

“I like to look on our sale racks, and other stores’ racks, so I know what not to buy again. I also get every magazine under the sun.”

 

What essentials do you pack to get you through the week? 

“I’m pretty much in a uniform, which involves jeans, t-shirts, and cardigans. I add a lot of scarves and a cool new bag each season. This season, a Loewe tote.”

 

Describe your Fashion Week routine – what does a typical day look like?

“We don’t go to a lot of shows anymore, just a few big ones, usually at night. It is literally five to seven showroom appointments a day, back to back.”

 

What do you enjoy the most? The least?

“There are a lot of friendships with other specialty store owners and buyers across the country. I love seeing them and catching up. I love the occasional show that just blows you away.

“I hate the crazy traffic, and that a lot of the mystery of the fashion business is gone. There is just too much information out there.”

 

 

 

Jordan Sinclair
Women’s Designer Buyer, Stanley Korshak

 

What kind of homework do you do before leaving for Fashion Week? 

“Style.com is a great tool for seeing the collections as soon as they show. WWD is also a must.”

 

What essentials do you pack to get you through the week?

“Comfy shoes are essential for getting around the city. I just got a new pair of wedge boots from Rick Owens that will be my uniform for February. I also never leave home without Chantecaille’s Energizing Eye Serum. It works miracles on tired eyes!”

 

Describe your Fashion Week routine – what does a typical day look like?

“I start my day with a Venti iced Americano from Starbucks. I am useless until I get this in my system. My appointments are back-to-back starting at 9 a.m., and usually go until about 7 p.m. Then, I am either back at the hotel writing orders or at a fun dinner with colleagues, vendors, or designers. Oh – and there is at least one more trip to Starbucks at some point during the day!”

 

What do you enjoy the most? The least?

“My favorite is seeing a new designer for the first time and falling in love with their collection. The worst is when you go to see a new collection, and have to tell the designer you are passing.”

 

 

 

 

Rajan Patel
Owner and Buyer, Urban Flower Grange Hall

 

What kind of homework do you do before leaving for Fashion Week? 

“Mainly restaurant bookings and a few key appointments, since I prefer to discover new vendors more organically. I see people like Natalia Brilli, Lydia Courteille, and Fernando Jorge every time I’m there. I’m mainly looking to see what new direction is being offered so I can augment what we have already.”

 

What essentials do you pack to get you through the week?

“I overpack, always, because I never know what I’m going to feel like wearing. In a sense, I think that all of it is essential when I’m deciding what to take. Friends that accompany me on trips constantly make fun of how much I carry.”

 

Describe your Fashion Week routine – what does a typical day look like?

“It depends on the day, but usually I prefer hammering out as much work as possible early in the day, so there is plenty of time for play in the evening. To me, the social aspect of Fashion Week is just as interesting, and certainly more fun, than the routine stuff.

“Often, I will get the hotel to pack me lunch so I don’t have to stop and think about where to eat lunch. Then I come back to my room and organize the day’s paperwork before a fun evening of drinking and dining. On days that I am lucky enough to go to a show, the show time usually dictates my schedule, and it tends to be a lighter work day because the timings are so random.”

 

What do you enjoy the most? The least?

“I would have to say I enjoy the people-watching the most. The way people dress during Fashion Week is always so wonderful to observe. Sometimes it’s so good, and sometimes not, but always a treat either way. What I enjoy the least would have to be the chaos and traffic. It drives me bonkers.”

 

 

(Lead images via MBFashionWeek.com)

 

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