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Ask Luke Reichle: How to survive Fashion Week

As costume designer for the hit ABC television series Castle, as well as top ten shows Without a Trace and CSI Miami, Luke Reichle's work is viewed by over 20 million people a week. Luke has dressed an enviable number of Oscar, Emmy, Gol...

Secrets of the Red Carpet

You've got questions, and we've got answers! SheKnows' contributing beauty and style expert, Luke Reichle, is taking your submissions and dishing out no-fuss answers! Today, Luke is sharing his tips for surviving the fashion jungle known as Fashion Week!
Ask Luke
Ask Luke

Secrets of the red carpet

You've got questions, and we've got answers! SheKnows' contributing beauty and style expert, Luke Reichle, is taking your submissions and dishing out no-fuss answers! Today, Luke is sharing his tips for surviving the fashion jungle known as Fashion Week!

Audience at Fashion Week

How to survive Fashion Week

I have a secret to share with you. It’s one of those things that someone in my business just doesn’t reveal, but in the hope that I might help someone who suffers from the same syndrome, I’m going to come out of the style closet and just lay it on the line. Here it is: I loathe Fashion Week.

Fashion Week, whether it’s New York, Paris, London, Milan or for that matter Bosnia-Herzegovina -- no, I’m not kidding, they have a Fashion Week -- gives me a good case of the screaming bajujus. And I know I’m not alone.

I know I’m supposed to be excited about the new collections parading down the runways in tents and cleverly repurposed spaces from here to the Left Bank and beyond. I know I’m supposed to clamor for a seat in the front row, or for that matter, a photo of the front row so I can blog about it. But what a runway show really prompts in me is the need to refill my anti-anxiety prescription.

I’ve tried to overcome my condition. I’ve tried several kinds of therapy. Talk therapy, where you talk incessantly about handbags; primal scream therapy, which invariably veers towards Marc Jacobs and/or Karl Lagerfeld; and aversion therapy, where I was shown the most recent Lanvin collection accompanied by soothing music and then an image of a tube-top followed by 10,000 volts.

Nothing worked. I don’t know why I’m like this. I stopped looking for the answer to “why” and started looking for “how.” How do I get through Fashion Week with just a few shards of my dignity in tact? And no, the answer is not, “Hide under the covers ‘til it’s over.” I’ve tried that too. With and without a decanter of claret.

The thing is, I actually need the information. I need to know what’s going on to do my job. I’ve found a few answers to this conundrum wrapped in a wrap dress and I’d like to share them with you.

Don’t try to cover it all

I call this “Fashion Cramming.” There is no way you can look at all the shows and take them in. Pick the designers who are most important to you and get a good gander the day they show. Then, after the circus has moved on to another town, take your time and go through the collections. Don’t worry -- you’ll catch up long before any of the clothes hit the stores.

Let someone else do the work for you

Here’s the thing. There are so many reporters, bloggers and style editors covering the shows that there is bound to be a ‘voice’ that matches your point of view. You’ll have to do some exploring, but eventually you’ll hit upon the source that’s right for you. A few of my favorites are New York Magazine, Style.com and the ever entertaining Cathy Horyn.

Don’t be afraid to say “Enough!”

Overexposure can be exhausting. It can drain you of your vitality and the constant rolling and clicking of the mouse can cause repetitive motion injuries.

So darling, pace yourself. Enjoy the theater of it and try not to take it too seriously. It took me years, but I’ve come to know this fact: While fashion may be my life, Fashion Week is not the boss of me.

More red carpet secrets

Join me for more of the tips, tricks and star-dressing strategies on Secrets of the Red Carpet: Style from the Inside-Out LIVE Saturdays at 3 p.m. PST, 6 p.m. EST at emPOWERme.tv/live and on demand here.

More Ask Luke

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Secrets of the Red Carpet: Ask Luke Reichle

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