A week has passed and LFW buzz is all over. As a newbie, the whole journey was decadent and overwhelming; the stars, the clothes, the parties ; everything was thought up to a whole new scale many times over that what has been experienced back home. Just to simplify my chronicles in London, I will break down the happenings and what to take note of (particularly what I think of the scene) if you ever happen to set foot in the trendy city during Fashion Week. 🙂

  1. There were tonnes of aspiring bloggers, photographers crowding the streets. If you want the highest chance of being photographed look no further than the stretch at Brewer St (where the occasion took place this year than the regal Somerset House) . There were literally hundreds of so-called bloggers and fashion photographers by the droves claiming their fame as a top blogger/photog in the fashion industry. Sure, you’d be spotted and have shots taken for the umpteenth time as you linger around all day in between shows or just want to increase your chances of being spotted by the likes of Young Joon Koo, Tommy Ton, Lee Oliviera or Adam Katz Sinding; but these guys only come out when there are bigger shows like David Koma, Ashish, Fyodor Golan or Holly Fulton. Most of the time these photogs, top bloggers and editors find their way at presentations/catwalk shows at a bigger or more private venue; so if you want to be seen and credited for what you do (aka covering shows or simply to show off your designer OOTDs) , these are the spots to go. The crowds differ when you see which location you go to; Brewer Street seemed to attract the young, students, friends-of-the-designer types (which, dont get me wrong, it could be as exciting) and most of the time these people are only there just for the 15 minutes of fame to be included in big mags’ street style photo galleries/social media recognition.

 

 

2) You will have higher chances of being snapped by the big street style photogs when you have  designer pieces on (no surprise there) and put on colorful display of an outfit.One of the most dominant street style magnets in KL is the color black, but Londoners ; who are assumed to prefer to wear dreary clothes due to their erratic and unpredictable weather patterns , refuse to settle with the justification that the color black is meant to be their signature color. Thus, the result on the streets were ablaze with all the brightest colors of the pantones and print archive; bright pinks, yellows, stripes, polka dots : in the middle of chilly September! However, you can’t just douse on all the colors available in your Faber Castell pencil box to get snapped, oh, no – street style stars in Loewe, Dior, Marni, Celine and many many designer or high street brands in chic and sleek pairings are more likely get shot. It’s all about proportions and less is more (indeed) – or a simple statement clutch to offset your high-street styling (ala my Georgiana Men At Work clutch by Anya Hindmarch). If you want to bulk up on the colors, select pieces that are polished and very eclectic like how Susie Bubble or Leandra Medine are constantly be seen in; and ones on Anna Dello Russo, Eva Chen – where colors come in luxe, distinct hues that very polished in form. If black is really how you roll, then pick standout 3D, architectureal pieces ala Maison Martin Margiela to elevate your street style game.

The Brewer Street species.

Spot me here! 😀

3)Lets talk about celebs selfies for a second. Celeb selfies are a pain. Depending on who you would consider as a celebrity, your chances of getting celeb selfies varies.

I sneaked with this one.. <3 – (Miss Jay of ANTM)

If you are keen on snapping with bloggers like Chiara, Kristina Bazan or celeb stylists; then your chances of securing said selfie is very high. However, if you’re after the big guns like your Hollywood starlets, Pop stars, supermodels and big name editors/writers then I would advice you to carefully calculate your intention/action. Fashion Week requires a lot of logistics and show-hopping, and big name editors and writers have one thing in their mind and it is their focus in delivering all these amazing reviews, news and breathtaking show coverage on-the-go. Best bet is to not be an obstruction to their work, as these are people who really take their work in deep.

The Anna Wintour, Baz Luhrmann and Hamish Bolwes line-up was barricaded by a group of Burberry suits-wearing men. -_-

 Hollywood starlets; bear in mind that they have bodyguards and perhaps after being bombarded with selfie requests pretty much everywhere they go, they arrive with the pure purpose of being a publicity machine for these labels to send their collection hype across. For my Cara selfie at the Burberry show, I was at the right place at the right time, there were hundreds of photogs and bloggers and cameras backstage to interview and ask them on what their thoughts of the collections were, or what’s the next project they are getting themselves into – and I meekly slithered in amongst the hungry-for-selfie-crowd to ACTUALLY take a video snap from Cara for The List’s Instagram page.

Because everyone wants to rack up hundreds of Instagram likes by getting a selfie with Cara..

Alas, due to my overwhelmed state of mind and star-struckness, (plus I noticed her agent is pulling her away from the spotlight), I took a selfish selfie with the actress/model.

Plus one photobomber at the back!

Instead, I glided over to the super pretty Suki Waterhouse; who was so sweet and naturally hounded by the cameras backstage and asked her to do a shoutout for The List.

She did it. It was awkward, but she did it. :,D (seriously anyone can share their big celeb selfie moment and tell me that they aren’t awkward while doing so I envy you all).

4) The caliber of guests is pivotal in creating the desired the atmosphere of the show. Its safe to say I have experienced 4 types of shows – The up-and-coming designers that showcased at Brewer Street and Designer Showroom spaces, the ones who tried to attempt to do venue-based presentations that are very disorganized and awkward in nature and the ones with heavily botox-ed affluent Eastern Euro crowd (think Kardashian – see what I did there?) , the cool underdog/local names with killer presentation and quirky location venues and of course the overwhelmingly impressive set-ups from the big labels where you get all the stars at the Frow plus amazing clothes. My personal fave would be big name shows, but the environment at presentations like Markus Lupfer’s, Steven Tai, Le Kilt, Phoebe English, Sophia Webster, Faustine Steinmetz who are rising sensations are the ones that provided an indelible creative experience, and they got all of my favorite, thinking people to attend to!

The Anya Hindmarch setups are notorious for being one of the most animated every LFW! (Spotted Sarah Harris and many more at this celeb-magnet of a show too.

 

Sienna Miller is perfection.

2nd time seeing Kate Moss in the flesh,the woman does not age…

BOF’s Tim Blanks in the heat of his show reporting.

5) Pick Uber to go around shows but plan ahead to make sure you’re not stuck in traffic. London has so much roadworks going on (and I get what Anya Hindmarch’s FW15 collection is all about now) that traffic congestion is almost inevitable. Of course nothing can compare to KL traffic, but it could be so frustrating when you could almost miss the important shows that it really makes a difference to arrive hours early before doors open (plus, enough time to quip and plan your OOTDs and snap as many photo-ops of clothes/celebs for coverage). For day shows, I used the Tube , but when there were big shows going on (eg. Burberry) that requires you to dust off that Alexander Wang dress you scored from that sample sale months ago, then yeah splurge a little and get Uber to secure that grand first impression entrance.

cursing in Uber..

Spoiler: I made it!

6) Fashion Essentials when you use the Tube:

  • A stylish bacpack or any bag that’s big enough for a spare flat shoe to be in it. Dude, wearing thigh-high boots in a train packed with rush hour peeps? come on.

Was going around via Tube, so I had to pack an extra pair of shows in my aunt’s Birkin. SHHH.

  • Powerbank (all those excessive selfies and show-coverage beckons a strong battery juice)
  • Nail polish : because I’m such a klutz and I always ended up chipping my good mani, so pack one up for top up requirements.
  • Namecards: this is the most essential, it’s your authority pass to all things like ‘Do you know who I am?!” arguments at the door. ( I dont do this, of course, but namecards expand your network AND helped you get in to shows without a glitch)

  • Oyster card: enough said, the ticket machine line is always packed with bumbling tourists ( it’s called sarcasm)
  • Brolly aka Umbrella : Get the signature black ones or the clear brollies, if your outfit game is on point, this would be a extra street style photog-magnet.
  • Camera : NEVER just rely on your camera phone. It takes ages to whip up the camera screen when you need it, so the best one is  my Canon G16 that starts up in rapid speed, ready to snap those million-dollar moments and Instagram-worthy shots that you phone camera’s too slow to capture.
  • Your invite. Because no matter how hard you try to claim you know this so and so, you cant come in if you’re not on the list!

How you turn an unsexy piece of necessity to something of a comoddity – its all about the outfit!

7) Invites always come at the LAST minute. So the waiting game is REAL. Sometimes 2-3 hours before the show! Imagine the madness and mad dash rush to the venue when your invite arrives an hour before the show!

My Anya Hindmarch invite..was lost in the mail somewhere. classic.

7) To bundle up my entire experience in one word: EPIC. It was definitely an eye-opening experience where you are humbled by and for someone who isn’t as knowledged as most of the stylists/editors in Malaysia, felt even more resigned when I am around these fashion heavyweights. It also served as a reminder that to some in Malaysia, who claimed to be the best, the most well-known and connected; is really minute, insignificant in the eyes of the collective fashion world. I think its about damn time that editors/stylists/writers/designers in Malaysia to know that though we may be IT in our small 27 million-populated country; yet we are still far behind the likes of top bloggers like Susie or Nicole, editors like Lucy Yeomans and Anna Wintours, fashion writers like Suzy Menkes/Hamish Bowles and stylists like Edward Enninful and Katy England. We do have a long way to go, and the trick is exposure and acceptance to new varieties and creative stimulants; having an eagerness to learn and listen rather than to gloat and putting yourself above par with these iconic figures. Sure, this post may seem like a syok sendiri post, but what’s wrong with approaching this from a naive, childish enthusiasm to something she (and it could happen to you too :)!) has always dreamt about going? 🙂 So, London; you will see me again and will be so eager to learn and be motivated from the experience. This girl is hungry, hungry for more beautiful, inspiring things I have yet to witness at NYC, Paris and Milan. So what’s next for Haida Yusof? 🙂

p/s : Heartfelt thanks to all the people who has faith in all the small people like me. Here I am with Anya Hindmarch Malaysia’s Country Manager, Soo Shea Pin! <3

This is only my first post since forever. (I really have too little of a time) Want to know what’s my best picks from LFW? Next post coming up soon! 🙂

(All images shot by yours truly via Canon G16 camera and iPhone 5s)

xx