Two weeks ago, we broke down a few Fashion Week myths. This time around, we asked a handful of publicists what they'd like to tell the world about how to act during fashion week. RULE #1: BE NICE Bonnie Morrison, who went from Publicity Director at KCD to Special Projects Editor at Men's Vogue and back to PR again, is handling Chris Benz's AW10 show. She says, "People outside the industry forget that it's a trade show (not a circus, discotheque). People inside the industry forget that it's not a contract or hostage negotiation (with a set of conditions, demands). Like anything in life, the fundamental rules apply: be nice, play fair, say please and thank you. People really do remember it...and they remember its opposite even longer." We've seen people throw tantrums and we've seen people ask nicely - the first tactic always fails.
Sidney Prawatyotin, who handles Rachel Comey and Organic at Krupp Group agrees, "In all honesty, people need to understand that there is no need to be rude when they approach the door. We are doing a job. Even though some people believe that we're there to make things harder and be discriminatory, yelling and pushing to get closer to the person with the clip board can, and will probably backfire. I just want to let everyone know: Don't yell or be rude to the person with the list. If you are cordial and patient... you will probably get in." That's true (even if you're not on the list). RULE #2: DON'T TAKE ADVANTAGE OF OUR FRIENDSHIP This is a more recent problem, as the world shrinks and one out of three people has a blog (just a guess) and everyone's tweeting at each other, it's easy to feel like you know the people you're dealing with, whether publicist, model, designer, whatever. Everyone wants to go to a fashion show - and bring their boyfriend. Matt Kays, Charlotte Ronson's beloved publicist from Seventh House emailed me back with this, "I want to say something funny like, 'Just because we got wasted together at a fashion party doesn't mean I have to invite you to shows.' BUT! I think a more serious quote is, 'Requesting a standing room ticket does not make it any easier on us. We still have to add you to the RSVP list, check you in at the front, and give you a standing room ticket when planning the seating chart.'" RULE #3: IT'S WORK, NOT PLAY* Emily Bungert from People's Revolution (whom you met last night on Kell on Earth) puts it bluntly, "Hundreds of hours, and plenty of blood, sweat and tears go into producing a fashion show...so just remember that for most of us, Fashion Week is a business - not a party." This is something we've addressed before, especially when it comes to people paying for their seats. On the one hand, we're jealous that you're all dolled up watching the show and get to go play afterward. On the other, we love our job and don't mind working 18 hour days for a month to do it, as long as no one makes it harder than necessary. *Unless you're a celebrity. In short, be nice, don't push, and relax.