A bit of history
Paris Fashion Week, along with three other major couture events in the world – London, New York and Milan Fashion Weeks – is a guide for fashionistas from all over the world. For seven days in spring and autumn, the French capital dictates fashion trends for the next season, buyers buy the latest creations of designers, and the audience, eager to join the fascinating world of high cut and sewing, rushes from show to show like crazy. Let’s say right away: it is almost impossible for a mere mortal to get to the shows of the Paris Fashion Week – but at this time you can enjoy the indescribable atmosphere of luxury, fun and extravagance, so characteristic of the French capital.
Paris Fashion Week is a relatively young event. The first show of the couturier’s achievements was held here in 1973 (for comparison, New York Fashion Week dates back to 1943). Since then, every year at the end of February, the fall-winter collections of the next season are presented here, and at the end of September – the spring-summer of next year, respectively.
The main venue for the Paris Fashion Week events is the Louvre Carousel trade and exhibition center, located under the Tuileries Gardens. In addition, many designers will certainly choose some unexpected place as the place of their defile, and the mischievous people John Galliano and Jean-Paul Gaultier are especially famous for this.
How to attend Paris Fashion Week?
It couldn’t be easier to come to Paris during Fashion Week. Attending shows is, alas, much more difficult, so you should tune in advance to general impressions of the festive atmosphere of the celebration of fashion, beauty and femininity, rather than attending specific shows.
The first rule is to book your accommodation in advance. Almost certainly in the center of Paris, all decent hotels will be occupied by a fashionable cohort, so you should focus on hotels located closer to the outskirts of the French capital – most importantly, convenient transport links with the Tuileries district. Also very useful is the Paris Guest Card, which entitles you to free travel on public transport. Finally, a close study of the official website of the Paris Fashion Week will help you to find out the dates of the shows and help you plan your time wisely.
In short, “in real life” – nothing. Paris Fashion Week is the most private of the other similar weeks. Screenings are arranged for buyers, celebrities and the press. At the same time, even if you are listed as an employee of a fashion magazine, you will not be able to get to the show – only French news agencies registered in a certain way are allowed.
However, you can still plunge into the carefree atmosphere of the outfits. To do this, you should go to Galeries Lafayette, where fashion shows of the current season are held on Fridays at 15:00 on the 7th floor in the Salon Opera. This, of course, is not as pompous an event as the Fashion Week shows, but access here is free – you just need to book a place in advance.