Last week the fashionistas of Belfast headed out to LIFE Church to celebrate all things fashion at West Coast Cooler’s Belfast Fashion Week. While most people were there to enjoy the impressive range of catwalk shows, my fashion week experience was a little different as I got to experience life backstage as a volunteer for the week.
Even though I know that the fashion industry is where I want to be, I still feel a little lost in terms of which direction I should be heading in and exactly where I belong in such a huge industry. During the summer, I secured two weeks of work experience at CMPR, the fabulous company behind the organisation of Belfast Fashion Week and from there the opportunity to take part in Fashion Week arose.
The experience offered me an insight into the craziness that goes on behind the scenes between press calls, fittings and ensuring that the show goes smoothly by helping each model get ready for their various looks of the evening. It really opened my eyes to the immense amount of hard work that goes into the entire event. At times times there can be a huge misconception that life in the fashion world consists of a lot of glitz and glam and although there is a little glamour thrown in there, a lot of the time it takes a lot of hard work which those contributing to the organising and running of Belfast Fashion Week proved this to us all as they successfully pulled off each show night after night.
Among the myriad of shows between Menswear, High Street Heaven, Local Designers and Boutiques and EXCEL clothing, were a few bonus events thrown into the mix making the week even more exciting. This included Sushi Saturday, the Fashion Souk and Style Sunday.
The Fashion Souk which consisted of several stalls and pop up stores selling a selection of both vintage and second hand bargains, was without a doubt a highlight of the week for me. I managed to snap up a few bargains from BFW Director Cathy Martin’s stall including the Smashbox Double Exposure eyeshadow palette which I’ve been eyeing up in Smashbox stores for a long time now so I’m very excited to finally have got my hands on it at a price my purse appreciates much more.
One of my favourite finds at the Fashion Souk was the Lines & Current pop up store. Their jewellery is exactly the kind of thing I’ve been loving at the moment, very simple, minimalist pieces that both add that finishing touch to an outfit as well as minimising distraction from the look itself. The ODA Open Circle ring and the ELSKA Infinity Necklace in particular have risen very quickly to the top of my wishlist. Check out their website http://www.linesandcurrent.com/collections/jewellery-collection and you’ll quickly fall in love with all of their pieces.
Another fashion find of mine while at the Fashion Souk was the stall run by Northern Irish stylists Lewis Cameron and Jamie Russell. I managed to get my hands on some gorgeous glitzy clutch bags and a pair of very sparkly sequin shorts which I’m really excited to get some wear out of.
Overall, although it was a very crazy, hectic week, I really enjoyed my experience at Belfast Fashion Week and I already can’t wait to see what’s in store for next season.