Hello, my dears friends! Hope you've been enjoy the late but final arrival of spring! If you've been wondering whether or not I will continue to blog as usual, you are not alone, I've been wondering the same!
After my last round of fashion weeks, especially the last show in Paris, I've had the greatest doubt and clarity at the same time, of where, what and who I want to be in this industry. For weeks since, I've been thinking over and over these questions, waiting out to see if it is just a low tide...finally, I think I am ready to share with you, which I hope will bring even more clarity to the picture.
So the story starts with back in early February, a close friend of mine got an offer to attend the Chanel FW18 RTW show in Paris. As a top performer in her field the past three years, this offer is a reward as well as an encouragement to her to work even harder. A big-time connoisseur of Chanel and luxury fashion, she was elated and I was just as excited, "Going to a Chanel show is a fashion lovers' ultimate dream come true, you have to go! I will be your entourage!"
Fast forward to end of February, a week before the Chanel show, we met in Paris. Despite all the background check, profiling drama that happened in between, we were pretty sure that she was going to the Chanel show. "Holly, they just told me they were not sure yet..." "How hard is it to transfer one woman's invitation to another?" I asked "plus they've vetted you!" apparently my knowledge of fashion shows fell short when it comes to Chanel, you can't just transfer your invitation, whoever goes to the show has to be "good enough" for Chanel.
Texts, emails, even phone calls were flying between my friend and her Chanel friend and her Chanel BFF, the final word of that night, must to our dismay, was my friend could secure her invite with a donation of $$$$. With hotel & flights all arranged for the show, my friend almost cave in and ready to dish out the small fortune. "Don't do it!" I said, "This is not right. You will get more out of the money if you buy something from Chanel you really enjoy." "But it is the Chanel show, every fashionista's dream!" "I know. your work is in such demand, they will invite you again."
Money talk came up a few more times before the final show date, each time I was more sure than the other that she should not pay for her invitation. Just the night before, my friend was on a late night train from her work to Paris, she called me to tell me she got an email confirmation, instructing her to check in at an earlier time. It changed everything we planned: we wouldn't have enough time to get ready and take pictures, neither will we able to stand for street styles.
I walked up to the entrance with my friend, they check her passport and let her in. I walked around the venue and found a quiet spot where I could wait for her. When the music was over, I walked back to the front waiting...ten minutes later, she was still inside. For a show costed so much effort and emotions to get in, I wouldn't want to leave, either. I walked inside the venue and found my friend, there was still a large crowd lingering around for pictures. I took more pictures for my friends, and some other ladies without a photographer, she took pictures for me...until the PR guys begged us to leave. From the videos my friend took, I realized that she had a standing position.
The same night, I watched on Instagram stories a fashion editor and her 20 something assistant having a blast at the same Chanel show, I had the biggest question: are we not good enough for Chanel? Checking out Chanel's guests on social media, I realized that to have access to the show, you have to be either a Chanel buyer or Chanel influencer. The Chanel buyer I am talking about here is not the average consumer who buys a few Chanel handbags a year, they are the ladies who places significant orders of Chanel RTW for their companies or for themselves, the latter might even be shopping Chanel fine jewelry on Ave Montaigne on a regular basis. It is a very small crowd, of course, the rest of Chanel show guest are influencers, people who can put Chanel in front of the eyes of millions of people, thinking celebrities and their stylists, major fashion magazine editors, mega bloggers, and some top fashion and accessories designers. People like my friend and I showed up in Chanel show is, in a way, quite extraordinary. :D
This show, and PFW overall, put me directly in touch with reality: who I am and where I am in this fashion world. As close as it seems that I've rubbed shoulders with some fashion elites, I'm still an little stylist / blogger who has a long way to prove her worthiness. Why bother to compare? Why is Chanel everything? You don't need anyone else's approval but your own...my husband always say that when I confess about my frustration and insecurity. He is right about the last part, I don't need anyone else's approval, but I can't approve myself being just the entourage, either. Time is now to push further the boundaries of creativity, focus even more on doing good work everyday, and worry less if the world will miss me at the fashion shows.
Thank you so much for reading this long post1 It means the world to me to have your support all these years!
Ph 5 knit jumpsuit ;
Chanel tweed jacket;
Poppy Lissman sunglasses;