With the PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week way behind us… I’d like to take a bit of your time to share some hush hush unspoken rules of Fashion. I am no expert on Fashion… I’d say I’m more of an observer and reporter rather than a critic. But yes, This is my blog and I write what I feel is right and the Fashion Week experience from me personally was amazing. Exhausting but amazing.
Four days may not be a lot of time to understand the phenomenon that the Fashion Industry is but if there is a crash course that does exist… it is the Fashion Week. Models, Designers, Media, Publicity, Press, Fans… you name it. Everything under one roof in its best and worst possible form.
And without further ado, I present to you, the FIVE rules of Fashion.
1. THE BIG DESIGNERS MUST GET STANDING OVATIONS.
The definition of Big however is ‘Old’ – The longer you’ve been in the industry, no matter how average, aged or over the hill… If you’ve survived you deserve a standing ovation.
Say you’re an established designer who does a done to death theme ‘in a new light’ the ‘new light’ being… that instead of taking inspiration from an ethnic motif you pretty much paste it all over your collection. Its nothing that the world hasn’t seen before but here is what you did right. ‘You worked with local artisans’ & ‘you kept it real’ (read: I didn’t take inspiration from it, I just reproduced it). Now slap that with a cheap bollywood soundtrack. The result?? As the collection ends the crowd stand up, roaring and applauding. The journos couldn’t get enough… The blogger tweets shoot through the roof. And its cool.
MATT DAEMON GIVES NAEEM KHAN A STANDING OVATION AT NYFW 2013
2. FASHION IS ENTERTAINMENT.
Presentation no doubt is a very important part of the show. But clearly with the Pakistani crowd you need to take it a notch up. Essentially, for people who are there to ‘see’ fashion shows for entertainment rather than business, you need to ‘very simply put’ entertain them. As a consequence, shows that use bollywood numbers and jhatkas and dishum dishum are immediately a crowd favorite.
MASALA IS AN EASY SELL ANYWHERE IN SOUTH ASIA
3. CONNECTIONS ARE EVERYTHING.
I guess this is universal… perhaps applies to any industry, anywhere. Before I go on I must slap a big fat disclaimer here. I am by no means criticizing the designers. I personally think they showed great potential. But here’s the thing… If you know a few prominent fashion journos as your family friends etc chances are you’ll get a showcase in Sunday Magazine, be raved about in Express Tribune and Socialites will flaunt your accessories as they walk the red carpet basically you’ll just have it easier than the others. The point is some will be remembered thanks to gracious friends while others will be forgotten. AND if you’re really lucky the serious journos in the front row will get up, wave, and even scream out how proud they are of you as you take the final bow.
ONE OF MY ALL TIME FAVOURITE FASHION GIFS
4. QUIRK IS COOL.
This is perhaps the oddest parallel to draw, but in the fashion industry you have Mullas. Well not literally, but you know… like in religion the easiest thing to do is grow a beard and pull your shalwar up, the easiest thing to do being a fashion designer is up the quirk factor. Of course, how else would you show your insane creativity (clearly not through the collection).
NOT EVERYONE CAN PULL OFF BETSY
5. SOME THINGS NEVER CHANGE.
If you’ve attended a few fashion weeks especially in Lahore, you’ll know how it all ends. There will be confetti guns, perhaps fireworks (which practically burnt my hair this time around) A dozen hot men who will walk down the ramp shirtless or with shirts… doesn’t matter. Everyone will stand up applaud at the job well done which might I add it is because it is a mean feat to pull off all that’s been pulled off in the last four days. Managing the music, the media, the models, the designers, the shows, the crowd, the sponsors… you name it. It has all been pulled off once again and for all my insights (read: whining), if I can look forward to it… I am sure the world is too.
FINALE FOR THE GRADUATE FASHION WEEK 2012

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Written by Sadaf Zarrar
Founding Partner