With this season’s Lakme Fashion Week kicking off in Mumbai at the plush Mumbai hotel, city’ creme de la creme have been keeping busy for a while, planning their ‘looks’ for their grand entrance. However, all their efforts will come crumbling down when these self-proclaimed divas will be seen frantically scrambling towards the ‘frow’ (front row) at one of the biggest fashion event.All the preparations and the details have been put in place months ago. The hairdresser, who will give them the perfect blow-dry, has been arranged and booked; the appointment at the nail spa has been confirmed so that their hands and feet look perfectly pampered before they can cram the latter into stilettos (red soles of course), which, mind you, is going to be painful. But remember no pain, no gain.
The socialites will arrive on the big day, partly with a lust for freebies, and partly to be papped at the red carpet. But they kid themselves and tell each other that they have come to ‘support’ the designer.
Guests at the front row of a fashion show.
Although, fret not, it’s the designers who’ll be having the last laugh, as their business comes from Tier 2 cities and not these pushy women.
This summer, I went to study fashion styling at Regents University in London. It was such a gruelling and enriching experience to get a thorough insight into what it takes to style a fashion shoot or create outfits from scraps of materials. We were also sent for a graduate fashion week, where students had put together the most spectacular outfits from recycled waste material. These are the same students who will be then instantly picked up by brands like Givenchy and will get instantly hired.
In my time at the fashion show, I noticed that the etiquettes of the rich and the famous were nothing like what I see at events back home. The frow at these shows attracts actual buyers and merchandisers. There are no paparazzi clicking anyone’s photos, and neither is there any air kissing. No one pushes other invitees to get to their seats, claiming to be somebody important. Instead, ushers politely and efficiently take care of the seating. Even though people do walk in trendily (but not comically) dressed, the event remains what it is — a hard-nosed business. I found all of this vastly refreshing. We have to give credit where it’s due, and we should take an instant crash course from the world’s fashion capital on frow etiquette before we demand a pass for ‘the next big show’ and risk ridicule. Ladies, frow anxiety is so uncool!