My First NYFW
2023 was a year of firsts for me. My first time traveling to Australia, my first Essence Fest experience (recap coming soon), and my first time going to New York Fashion Week.
I’ve been a blogger and eventual content creator for the last 14(ish) years. When I first started blogging it was all about my transition from college to “real life” and just how little of a clue I had about what I wanted to do with my life next. Part of my “real life” at the time was me sharing items I bought from the thrift store and customized on a budget. It was from there that I became a “fashion blogger.” But truth be told, I’ve never considered myself to be a fashionista or a fashion girl. Don’t get me wrong, I think I have style. But I’ll never claim to be up on all the latest trends or hottest designer items. And because of that I’ve always felt like NYFW was for the girls who all about expensive designers and archival couture collections.
So year after year, when New York Fashion Week rolled around, I made zero plans to attend. Even when I lived in NYC and the scene was just a train ride away, I still never went. Plainly put, I felt like I didn’t belong. Well, this past Fashion Week—with a a gentle nudge from some of my favorite brands and fellow content creators—I decided to change that.
So let’s get into it!
Last year I was able to partner with Lafayette 148 for a few campaigns and they’ve become a really wonderful brand partner. So, when they asked if I was planning to attend fashion week, for the first time I actually considered going. And when they sent over a formal invitation to their presentation—my first ever NYFW invitation (!!!)—I decided to go for it!
As part of one of my previous campaigns, I was able to visit their new Chicago boutique and pick out this convertible trench coat. Though it was still plenty warm in NYC, it was a light enough layer that I could get away with it.
I paired it with a denim asymmetrical dress, a braided denim bag and gold platform heels from Amazon. I topped the whole look off with a gold beaded necklace and large gold earrings (available in different color) from Lafayette 148.
And as it turned out, I ended up matching the aesthetic of the show to an almost scary level. Right down to my hair and the mannequins’ lack thereof. lol
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Another reason I ended up going to New York Fashion Week was because my friend and fellow content creator, Candace Marie, also reached out and asked if I was planning to attend. When I told her I was strongly considering it, she invited me to attend Chanel Beauty’s pop-up diner experience in Brooklyn.
Chanel Diner Pop-up
The next day had to be the hottest day I’ve ever experienced in NYC. I thought for sure I would die of heat stroke. Especially since I was wearing a tweed suit—a custom creation from me and my tailor.
I wanted to wear something that spoke to the classic Chanel aesthetic, but being true to the non-fashion girl I am, I don’t own any Chanel. So I had to get creative.
I found this Sau Lee dress from Revolve that I felt would be a great base for something custom. So I took the dress to my tailor along with inspiration photos and she turned it into the perfect skirt and blazer combo.
One of the things I loved about fashion week was getting to run into friends and fellow influencers. It was such a wonderful treat to run into my friend, Carmeon. We had just seen each other a few weeks before when she and a few other friends flew to Chicago and surprised me for my birthday. So it was nice to see her again during both of our first trip to fashion week.
And of course there’s the powerhouse that is Candace. She was the whole reason we were both there and I’m so honored that she would reach out to me and invite me into “the room.” THANK YOU CANDACE!
Chanel went all out for their diner experience. It was a nod to 1950’s diners. Complete with a jukebox, (free) working gumball machine, and gorgeous male models serving champagne and ice cream.
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After stopping into the Chanel Diner pop-up, I was able to head back to my hotel for a little downtown before heading back out to the L’Agence presentation. Everyone told me this would be one of the more packed shows and they were right. There was a bit of a line to get in and it was pretty chaotic at the door.
But my outfit made up for the craziness in my mind because it was my favorite look of the week.
I was so excited to wear this bow halter top from Area. It’s such a statement piece and not an item I would normally buy because it was a bit of a splurge. But I came across it when my friends were in town for my birthday and they encouraged me to buy it and I’m glad they did. I felt so chic and comfortable in this look. It was the perfect mix of edgy and elegant—my favorite fashion combo. It was also a great example of high low fashion since I paired the top with a really affordable pair of cargo jeans from Fashion Nova.
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Rebecca Minkoff After-Party
I closed out my New York Fashion Week by attending the Rebecca Minkoff after-party. I’ve worked with Rebecca Minkoff in the past and was even lucky enough to meet her at a Nordstrom event here in Chicago several years ago. So this was a pretty full circle moment.
The coolest thing happened with this look. Cardi B actually commented on and shared my fashion week reel featuring her and Megan’s song ‘Bongos’. That was pretty surprising!
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The Rebecca Minkoff after-party was really the only social event I attended. But I ran into quite a few people I knew and got to meet some new people at the same time. All while sipping champagne and watching Leon Bridges perform. It was the perfect way to wrap up the week.
Where I Stayed
I was fortunate to be invited to stay at one of the newer hotels in the city courtesy of The Wall Street Hotel. (The property had just celebrated their 1 year anniversary.) The decor throughout the hotel is absolutely stunning and all of the staff was incredibly friendly and welcoming.
A special ‘Thank You’ to The Wall Street Hotel for a wonderful stay.
SHOP THIS LOOK:
My first New York Fashion Week was a really positive experience and I’m really glad I went. It helped me to see that I can stretch my view of myself and put myself in rooms that maybe make me a little scared.
Given that it was my first fashion week and I decided to go pretty last minute, I didn’t have a ton of invitations to shows. Which ended up working out because it gave me an opportunity to take the week at my own pace and really get a feel for what a successful fashion week looked like for me.
Ultimately, I felt that the week went perfectly. I was able to strength my relationships with current and potential brand partners, hang out with some of my favorite content creators, collaborate with an incredibly talented photographer—Marrica Evans—and push myself out of my comfort zone.
New York Fashion Week…I came, I saw, I conquered.
“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t—you’re right.” ―