Reality vs. Expectation: London Fashion Week

fashion show

London Fashion Week is one of the “Big Four” of fashion weeks internationally, including Milan, Paris and New York. Yet, there still seems to be a veil of mystery surrounding the event. So, consider this your myth-buster so that you are fully prepared for what is in store for you if you plan on heading to London over this period.

After all, the last thing you want is to book into Piccadilly Hotel London, only to find that the show is not quite what you thought it would be.

Expectation: You can go to any event at London Fashion Week.

Reality: Often, people mistake the London Fashion Week as a sort of festival open to anyone who enjoys the industry or considers themselves a fashionista. But London Fashion Week is not just a free-for-all shopping trip in the UK’s capital – though we wish that was the case! 

In the past, London Fashion Week has been completely inaccessible to the public and only invited guests could attend. However, this upcoming Fashion Week in London in September is a special one, because it is the first of its kind that is allowing the public to attend events, as decreed by the British Fashion Council. The trade invitees will go on as usual, attending events dedicated to buying within the industry. However, there will be catwalk shows available for public consumption and members of the public will be able to buy tickets for events hosted at The Store X on 14 September and 15 September.

Expectation: Only famous designers showcase at London Fashion Week.

Reality: Because Fashion Weeks internationally have become associated with big names like Burberry and Victoria Beckham, or fashion magazines such as Vogue or GW, people often incorrectly think that London Fashion Week is only a display of well-established designers. What makes Fashion Weeks so special, though, is the opposite – the fact that new designers in the industry have the opportunity to showcase their new labels and often get the publicity that launches their career.

Expectation: The whole event has been perfected, following a swift and rigid schedule.

Reality: People think that the international clout of Fashion Week would mean it is a perfectly well-oiled machine, whereas the reality is that things are often running behind schedule and that attending the events means channelling a lot of inner peace and patience.

A Rituals Spa treatment amidst shows ought to help with that, as will a bite to eat at restaurants in Piccadilly to stop the dreaded risk of Hanger. However, this is not to say you should not be on time and polite for all the events – the industry may be slightly tardy on occasion given the nature of what they are doing, but you should never be.

Expectation: Every London Fashion Week venue will provide the same experience.

Reality: Some people expect a degree of continuity when it comes to the venues hosting London Fashion Week, and to a large extent this is the case. Each venue is suitable for its purpose and offering something unique to the fashion show itself. However, there will be times where the venue is not as comfortable as you would like and you need to remember that it is all happening for an artistic reason. In some situations, for instance, you may not have the ideal view of what is happening due to how the room is set up.

Expectation: The fashion industry is indifferent to its social impact.

Reality: Though mostly unfounded, it has become popular to believe that events associated with fashion are inherently unconscious of the world around them – that the industry is frivolous or uncaring. However, Positive Fashion is an initiative of the British Fashion Council that is a high priority for those working in the industry. They ensure that the best practices are maintained throughout the industry, working towards not only maintaining the status quo but going above and beyond to inspire positive social, environmental and economic change relating to fashion.

With this in mind, it is important to regard the British Fashion Council’s approach to the ban on fur, which they have not, as of yet, implemented. Though most consumers will refuse the buy fur, the lack of a ban on the trade itself is a statement that can’t be ignored. It is important to know that the idea that the council is “indifferent” is certainly not the case, but rather that the deliberations run deep within the community and as of yet, have not been addressed directly.

Expectation: London Fashion Week is limited to the organisations’ organised events.

Reality: The fantastic reality of London Fashion Week is that you do not have to go or be invited to the official events to get a feel for the festivities. Many shops, especially those in top shopping districts like Oxford Street, will have themed events on in-store for the everyday shopper who couldn’t get hold of official Fashion Week tickets. Topshop and New Look are always involved!

Expectation: You will feel constantly judged about what you are wearing.

Reality: The truth is, what you wear is obviously important when attending London Fashion Week events. However, what is not true is that you will spend the whole time feeling judged or self-conscious. The events are usually so overpopulated, with everybody fully absorbed in what they are doing. Not to mention, if you assume everyone else is feeling what you are feeling, then you can assume that nobody has time to do anything except worry about their own outfits. Confidence is key, so as long as you are happy with yourself, everybody else will follow suit.

At the end of the day, Fashion Week can be as amazing as you make it. But if you go in with incorrect or unrealistic expectations, you could end up feeling disappointed. So make sure you understand all these key points and you are bound to have an incredible time no matter what sort of tickets you have or events you attend.

Take advantage of special offers on London hotels and start planning your trip for London Fashion Week now!