Since I was young, attending a New York Fashion Week runway show has always been on my bucket list. While I never thought it would be possible without thousands of followers on Instagram, a fashion internship, or $550 for an actual ticket, I decided on a whim to get on a bus to New York City and try to sneak in anyway.
I’ll take you through my best tips and the course of action you should take if you’re trying to sneak into NYFW like I did.
Do your research
After some preliminary Google searches, I found out that shows are usually held at Spring Studios and Industria, but most stories of sneaking in involved actually knowing someone in the industry. Without any connections, my best bet was to dress like an intern and see if I could just walk in, and for the most part, it worked.
Look and act the part
I wore black boyfriend jeans, a black crew neck shirt, black Vans, and a black leather jacket. Walking in through the back entrance, someone asked, “You work here, right?”, then directed me to the elevator, letting me bypass everyone who was standing in line with their tickets. The security guard inside said, “6th floor?” and I nodded again.
Talk to people and don’t be afraid to ask for what you want
When the doors opened on the 6th floor, I realized they were checking tickets again, and figured this was as far as I was could get. I headed back downstairs to the lounge area, where people were waiting for their next shows. While I didn’t get to see a show at Spring Studios, I figured at least I would get to meet some industry professionals.
While sitting on a bench, I started a conversation with the woman sitting next to me. She said she was a stylist, and as we started talking more, she mentioned that her coworkers had sent her tickets for a show she wasn’t planning on going to. Normally, I’d feel intimidated and uncomfortable asking a stranger for a favor, but I knew I was going to regret it if I didn’t at least ask. Luckily, she didn’t mind and emailed me the tickets.
It’s over faster than you think
I rushed over to Pier59 for the Oxford Fashion Group show, where seats were already full and standing room was filling up as well. Though it was a collection of smaller designers, the press pit was still cramped, and I couldn’t believe I was actually attending a runway show. The lights dimmed, the music started, and the models began walking down the runway. Then, all too quickly, the last model turned the corner, the audience applauded, and the lights came back on.
My reminder to pursue what I want
Through the whirlwind that was a typical fashion week for some, I was reminded that doing things that scare me can have such rewarding outcomes. It truly does pay off to go after what you want, whether that be career-wise, relationship-wise, or anything else.
Who knows? Maybe in the future, I’ll get my own NYFW invite.