Fake It Til You Make It: How to Sound Like a Fashionista When You’re Not

Fashion can be a terrifying industry. When I first started attending fashion events in New York, I felt like no matter what I did it would be painfully obvious that I was a country bumpkin with bad style. Now that I’ve had some practice going to fashion events, I’ve picked up a couple of pointers that will work for anyone trying to fit in, no matter where you’re from or who you (don’t) know.

  • Refer to all plural items in the singular. For example, instead of “those are great boots,” say “that is a great boot.” Instead of “that sweater would look cute with pants,” say “that sweater would look cute with a pant.”
  • Anna Wintour’s last name is pronounced “winter,” like the season, not “win-toooor.” Fun fact: her nickname at Vogue is “Nuclear Wintour.”
  • Her partner in Vogueosity, Andre Leon Talley, is known as ALT. That’s “Ay Ell Tee” (say the letters) and not “alt” (like the computer key or porn genre).
  • While we’re at it, Ralph Lauren’s last name is pronounced Lauren, like the Conrad or the Hutton, not “Luh-rennn.”
  • When you can’t find a good way to explain why you like something, say that it “pops.”
  • That especially goes for beauty products. Say it with me a couple of times: “that eyeliner really makes your eyes pop.”
  • Oh, and it’s only eyes that pop. Saying that someone’s nose or forehead pops is kind of weird. And they would probably think you said they had zits.
  • It is true that everybody wears black all the time.
  • If you don’t want to wear head to toe black, just put together the craziest fucking outfit ever. Clown pants! Paisley! A hat so wide it won’t fit in the door! Make Bjork look like she’s trifling!
  • It is basically impossible to overdress at a fashion event, even if it’s 10 AM on a Tuesday and it’s sleeting outside.
  • When asked your opinion on a designer you’ve never heard of, say you dislike them. It is a lot easier to fake hating something (be blase and shrug a lot) than it is to fake liking something (give reasons, cite examples).
  • Many people in fashion do not know as much as they want you to think they do. If they attempt to call you out on your fakeitude, then just call them out on theirs and call it a deal.
  • If you want to sound smart, ask someone if they read a certain article in Harper’s Bazaar. They will always say no, because no one reads Harper’s Bazaar.
Share This Post:
    • emily

      kind of funny that an Avedon photo for Harper’s Bazaar appeared just before this post, apparently nobody reads Harper’s Bazaar

      • Lilit Marcus

        I didn’t say anything about looking at the pictures.

    • Charlotte

      This made me smile so much!! I have a style column in my student newspaper and I’m always so scared someone is going to rat me out for not knowing enough about fashion!!


    • Chickalupe

      Funny as always, Lilit! BTW, I really like that ice cream picture that heads the article. Where is it from?

    • Richard Sandberg

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