I'm having a really good time at London Fashion Week. Here's why:
1. The Topshop venue. Along with its own Unique show, Topshop sponsors quite a few emerging designers, including Peter Pilotto, Richard Nicoll, and Mary Katrantzou. The venue itself--Old Billingsgate Market in The City--is airy and filled with light, but what's really incredible is the food. Yep. Not only does Topshop have unlimited waters, champagne, and espresso on hand, they also serve a new menu for each show. Like, a four course menu including a signature cocktail. (This morning at Peter Pilotto, it was yogurt and granola, bacon canapes, plum muffins, and freshly-squeezed blood orange juice. Last night at Richard Nicoll, it was olives, charcuterie, truffled brie cheese....the list goes on, but you get the point.) Anyways, it's all FREE. That's right--free.
2. Registering is a cinch. I don't even officially register for New York Fashion Week because it's such a pain. In London, it's necessary because you are scanned in every time you enter a new room at Somerset House (their answer to Lincoln Center.) The good news? It takes 2 seconds. Literally. They take your ID, look you up, and your pass magically appears. Registering also gives you access to the fashion bus--a lifesaver for those of us who don't always have access to a car.
3. Press lounges. Somerset House boasts a big press lounge, where they serve free coffee, water, and yes, food! The wifi actually works and it's always crowded--but never too crowded. Being able to tuck in there for an hour or two makes getting my work done way easier. They've also got a "blogger bar" with tons of laptops available for use.
4. The best parties. I tend to send other reporters to parties at New York Fashion Week, mostly because I'm too knackered to go, but also because I don't particularly like going. (Obviously, there are exceptions to that rule, such as Rag & Bone.) In London, the parties are really fun! I WANT to go! I don't always follow through--last night, Emily covered Mulberry's bash for us as I could not peel myself away from the computer--but I want to go! Tonight there's a Love party with Alex Wang, an AnOther mag party, a Linda Farrow party, Giles' after party...so much. And I'm actually excited about them, even with only six hours of sleep under my belt.
5. Olivia Palermo. Okay, not Olivia in particular, but the idea of Olivia. Brits love their celebrities, and there are a lot of them. The front row here is always so eclectic--from Kirsten Dunst to Samantha Cameron, who I was sitting next to today at Holly Fulton--and it proves to me that the Brits are anything but snobbish.
PS: A big thanks to Swarovski for sponsoring my trip to LFW.