Welcome back, Style Kat!
I have so many exciting things to share with you about my first experience at New York Fashion Week (NYFW)! I had the incredible privilege of meeting many wonderful and talented individuals, and volunteer as a wardrobe assistant for a charity fashion show called Swank Deco.
I want to give a special thanks to my friend/ supermodel-in-the-making, Dajah Dorn, for telling me about this opportunity, and Princess Keith for selecting me.
DAY ONE: Kathryn in the City Part II
According to www.FashionUnited.com, “New York Fashion Week is the bi-annual event of runway shows and presentations used to highlight designers’ collections for the next fashion season.” The site also notes that the fall/winter collections debut in February and spring/summer collections debut in September.
My first day back in New York after being away for six months, felt invigorating. I arrived Feb. 7, and I was back for a different purpose–I was there to pursue my dreams.
I came to visit my friend Kiara, who I met at Florida A&M University/our former PR internship and she kindly opened her doors for me to stay with her for my three-day trip.
I dropped off my luggage and immediately wanted to check out all of the amazing stores (ZARA, MANGO and more) around the city that we don’t have here in Tallahassee, FL.
Once Kiara was off the clock, she took me to a delicious BBQ restaurant and we concluded our night with amazing food and empowering conversation.
DAY 2: Exploring What’s Out There
I decided to wake up early the next morning and beat my face into oblivion (a super-dramatic way of saying I did good job on my makeup) and wear something fabulous.
I also planned to meet fellow style blogger and College Fashionista member, Sierra Mayhew (IG: @siierramayhew) for lunch at an Australian cafe called Ruby’s that she picked.
It was such a pleasure to finally meet her. The two of us had planned to link up last August, but there were scheduling conflicts. We sat down and had a lovely chat about fashion, while I sipped on a very interesting beverage– activated charcoal tea.
I wouldn’t say that the tea was terrible, but I don’t think I would order it again. The food however, was fabulous.
We decided to snap some pictures of each other for a few minutes before Sierra had to dash back to work, but she captured the most beautiful pictures of me. This is how you take your friend’s photos #GetThoseAngles #Yas:
Later that evening, my friend Bianca texted me and invited me out to dinner at there Uncle’s restaurant, Blarney Stone and introduced me to her amazing friends/ co-workers, Kiana and Kris.
We, literally, had the best time EVER! We had a great time bonding and getting to know each other more. It is such a blessing to have friends who are so ambitious and goal-driven.
Tomorrow was the big day! I would begin my first New York Fashion Week activities with my friend, Jessy!
DAY 3: A Taste of NYFW
Jessy invited me to a Yuna Yang fashion show. She had previously interned for the designer and generously added me as her plus-one to the show.
Art Meso in Atlanta was my first-ever fashion show, but this was my very first NYFW show I had ever attended. I was beyond thrilled. I had spent hours sleuthing for something to wear for the occasion.
Below are gorgeous photos taken of me by Hiedi Nguyen, (IG: @photosbyhiedi) who stopped to tell me that she loved my style. Thank you so much!
Check out some pictures that I took of the best-dressed attendees at the show:
I also met so many powerful, stylish and uplifting women while I was waiting for the show to start. The three who really made an impact on me were Cindy (IG: @fashionablycin), Bri (IG: @bristyling) and Liz (IG: @lizeverettstyle).
Although it was our first encounter, we talked as if we had known each other our whole lives. It’s rare to encounter individuals like them, and I am so happy that we became acquainted. I will never forget their kindness and the knowledge that we exchanged.
Here are some video clips that Jessy recorded of the Yuna Yang show:
After that, Jessy and I hopped on the subway and headed to the Mac Duggal show at a different location:
Last stop: Swank Deco.
This was the moment I had been waiting for all day. I was ready to use the talents that God blessed me with and learn as much as I could while I was behind the scenes. I had always prayed to know what it was like backstage before a fashion show starts for NYFW.
Swank Deco is a fashion show production company, based in Orlando, FL. There were at least four designers who presented their work on the runway.
I had the pleasure of assisting designer, Natalie Dillard, of NazzyKnits (IG: @nazzyknits). She specializes in crafting handmade fashions out of crochet. I assisted her with styling three models walking in the show. Everyone was such a pleasure to meet and work with. I couldn’t have asked for a better experience.
Jessy, our friend Oscar Guzman (IG: @oscg96) and his friend, Rubi, came to show their support and attended the show. Jessy and I also met two lovely gentlemen from Paris, Ntoyi (IG: @ntoyi_) and Parfait (IG: @parfait4real).
On the final day of my trip, professional photographer and FAMU alumna, Zia Ave (IG: @zia.ave), captured beautiful pictures of me when we linked up for a last-minute photoshoot before I headed home. We met up in Bedford–Stuyvesant, Brooklyn (Bed-Stuy) and walked around until we found these vibrant red stairs that coincidentally matched my monochrome, red outfit.
I had a trip of a lifetime and experienced moments that I’ll never forget. Not only did I a productive visit, but my friends from home earned opportunities to showcase their talents at NYFW too.
And, we all support each other along the way. That’s what it’s all about.