A couple months ago, an amazing opportunity came my way. I was offered to be the head shoes and accessories coordinator for St. Louis Fashion Week Fall 2014. As someone that is a fashion major and wants to pursue event planning, this was an absolutely perfect position and way to combine my passions. The past several weeks, I have participated in numerous meetings, helped with model casting, and communicated with designers, Alive Magazine (the producer of St. Louis Fashion Week), and Brown Shoe Company (the show sponsor and shoe donor).
After a lot of prep work, it was extremely exciting and rewarding to see it all finally come together. I was a part of three runway shows. The other events for St. Louis Fashion Week consisted of panel presentations and a gala, which I did not help coordinate. The first show was at Neiman Marcus at Plaza Frontenac. This featured three designers that have collections at the retailer. The second, Emerging Designer, showcased six designer collections, and was a competition for a $15,000 cash prize. Lastly, Designer Showcase, featured Tess Giberson, Timo Weiland, and Yigal Azrouel. All of these designers already have established stores and live in New York City. In fact, they have even been a part of New York Fashion Week.
Emerging Designer and Designer Showcase required the most prep work. This past week, at least 12 hours a day were spent at Union Station preparing the front and back stage areas. It was one of the most tiring, yet rewarding experiences. I met and worked with so many outstanding professionals in the fashion industry, including Elizabeth Tucker, the publisher at Alive Magazine and Fern Mallis, the producer of New York Fashion Week. Also, the director of St. Louis Fashion Week (and the one to offer the position to me in the first place), Shannon Lichti, said she would love to keep me for the shows in the spring. Also, she wants to collaborate on events outside of Fashion Week. It is extremely exciting to know that I have great job connections, especially since I’ll be graduating in May.
Because this whole experience was a dream of mine, it hardly seemed real. Especially when I got a shout-out on the runway. After the final show, I was called to the stage to receive flowers. This was a very special and touching moment. It definitely makes me realize how hard work can truly pay off. Some of my dreams are becoming a reality, and I could not be more eager for the near future ahead of me.