• Mon, Feb 13 2012

Love/Hate Fashion Week: Why Julia Allison Keeps Going Back To Fashion Week

julia allison

Here at TheGloss, NYFW will be covered by two opposing forces: fashion week first timer Alice Walker Wright, and long time veteran Julia Allison. They’ll be bringing you some insights into the week that promise to go beyond our standard “pretty dresses are fun” take on it. Check out some of Julia’s Fashion Week coverage here and here.

Fashion Week, oh fashion week, how I adore slash abhor you.  It’s not your fault, really.  You are what you are: a teeming mess of egos and art, of waiting and judging and pushing and shoving while being deprived of food and water for ten hours all to watch 12-14 minutes of (sometimes) pure sartorial genius and (sometimes) absolute nonsensical crap that even 2% body fat can’t make look good.

Anyone who’s ever attended fashion week in the working capacity – whether as a reporter or a PR rep or a dresser or a security guard – understands the undertones that accompany uttering that phrase: “New York Fashion Week,” the relentless anxiety, the need-for-a-new-Xanax-prescription-ness of it all.  If you ever wondered, “am I an important, autonomous human being capable of making my own decisions, wearing comfortable clothing and not being treated like cattle?” wonder no longer: you are not.

At Fashion Week you will be bossed and herded and glared and glowered at. You will dodge and weave and bob and dart around shuffling, gaping, faux fur clad fourists (the harmless and occasionally irritating fashionista-tourist), and at the end of it all, you’ll collapse on your couch clutching a giant jar of JIF in one hand and a spoon in the other and vowing never, ever to take off your Uggs & Lululemon again.

This February marks my tenth season “at the tents,” – although “the tents” have gone from Bryant Park to Lincoln Center, and Fashion Week isn’t limited to that venue.  I’ve attended well over 250 shows (maybe more), and each season I interview 10-20 designers.  I try never to ask them “what was your inspiration?” (barf!), but sometimes I panic and That Question just tumbles out. Although that’s better than the time I asked Custo Dalmau, designer of Custo Barcelona, whether he was “on drugs” when he designed his fall collection. It was supposed to be a joke, I guess … but it didn’t really, um, translate.  Oops?

Toward the beginning of my fashion week tenure, I focused on celebrities – more often than not “celebrities” – in the front row. However, I soon found that required nerves of steel and lead feet, as you’re literally being crushed by a wall of aggressive photographers, none of whom care about your sound quality or picture quality, or your quality of anything, at all, whatsoever.  To sum it up: when you think of the ideal interview environmen (quiet, focused, well lit, plenty of time, no one yelling at you), Fashion Week is pretty much the antithesis.

So why do I keep coming back? Um … it pays the rent.

As much as I need post-fashion week therapy for my bruised ego and a podiatrist for my bruised toes, there are worse ways to make a living.  And much like a bi-polar on-and-off boyfriend, you try to remember the good times – like the standing ovations at Naeem Khan, the lilting melody of Regina Spektor singing at Oscar de la Renta, the crazy middle-of-the-runway waterfalls at Isaac Mizrahi. You also remember the one time Kanye made an entire theatre of people wait 45 minutes for him and his Louis Vuitton carrying entourage to grace us with their strategically blinged presence.  Ah, memories.

There are those good  moments, though, and you hold them in your heart while you wait in the 20 degree cold wearing a cape, clutching a mike, waiting for the PR people to find you on the list for a backstage interview even though you confirmed FOURTEEN TIMES via email.  You hold them in your heart and in your iPhone, and when you tell people – strangers! interns! your mom’s friends! ladies from the Midwest! classmates who made the questionable decision to work in finance! -  that you cover “fashion week,” and they chirp, “OMG! How much fun is that!?” you restrain yourself from slapping them and allow a little of their guileless delight to creep into your jaded soul, just the tip, just for a second, just to see how it feels.

And it feels pretty good.

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  • Unsubscribe

    Can I have those 2 minutes of my life back? Please? I’m torn between hysterics and disgust.

    The “author” of this article continues to be one of the most vile, pathetic and untalented human beings the world has ever seen. That bi-polar comment is truly scraping the bottom of the barrel. And The Gloss should be ashamed of itself for giving this human turd any type of platform whatsoever.

    She is not a journalist. She is mean spirited. And none of what she writes is based in truth.

    I’m done with this place.

    • Malkovich

      Unsubscribe – Are you really that on-and-off boyfriend?

    • Unsubscribe

      No. I’m just someone who is familiar with the author’s antics and recognizes how particularly vile that reference was.

    • MR

      Why not send an email to Jennifer and vent some more to her? I don’t think you should stop blogging here, over this.

  • jessica

    She goes because “it pays the rent.” Um… really? Last season’s fashion week was only uploaded to her personal Vimeo account and is available no where else on the internet. This year she claims to be working for NBC 4 though NBC4 disagrees about that.

    She twittered that she missed some shows already because she felt “lazy” and later changed those tweets to read “uninspired.” I wish my boss paid me when I felt lazy and uninspired.

    I find all of this amusing except that, really The Gloss – please do some fact checking, already.

    • Avodah

      LOL! I want the TheGloss to do an expose on how, exactly, Julia Allison pays the rent.

    • MM

      @Avodah: Now THAT I would read!! That would be hysterical!

  • aCalmedDownKevin

    I would love to know what media outlet Julia Allison is working for this year. Considering this is the first article/video/report she’s done this year.

    Who is “paying these bills” having you cover fashion week?

    Also, Julia Allison? What is this 2008? She was a nobody THEN, let alone now.

  • anon

    I’m pretty sure that people who actually attend NYFW most likely don’t own or wear Uggs. #justsaying

    Also, shouldn’t the last portion about “just the tip, just for a second?” be attributed to Wedding Crashers which is where it comes from..?

  • aloi

    i am so sorry for you. i wish you could find a job that you like so we don’t all have to suffer.

  • say what

    What’s a LuLu Lemon?

    • L.

      Liz Lemon’s sister!

  • DBJ

    I’d love to hear a counterpoint article from someone in the fashion industry about why they hate semi-pro (I’m being generous here) media types who have terminal cases of entitlement.

  • M

    Jennifer Wright pretty much already wrote this post, but better – less whiny and memememe. Also what news outlet does she work for? I googled her and nothing came up that’s current, only old stuff. All her videos last year are only on her own personal vimeo.

  • Sally

    “Just the tip. Just for a second, just to see how it feels” is a line from the movie Wedding Crashers–it should be in quotes, as it’s origin certainly is not common knowledge.

    Also it’s a pretty disgusting line to just throw into a column that has nothing to do with sex. Loses its cheekiness and just seems bizarre and gross.

  • Sara

    My friend & I were in NYC during Fashion Week….it wasn’t something we planned on but after discovering it was THAT WEEK we freaked. Then we frowned. The cheapest way we could find to see a show….any show…was paying $500 a piece for back row seats. We would’ve given anything (especially me…being a columnist) to see the shows for free (& cover them for a paycheck)…..this ridiculous rant by Julia makes me want to scream. Also….yes, Princess Whinesalot….I was one of those disgusting tourists. Except I was rocking vintage mixed with Target….and enjoying every dang second of every dang moment….and I’ll cherish those moments for the rest of my life. Please….for the rest of use who aren’t jaded & still are able to close our eyes and dream with smiles on our faces…..shut the eff up & step aside. You may dress like an innocent school girl but you certainly don’t act like one.

  • Miiko Hayashi

    Want to know more about Julia Allison, and why some people consider her a fraud of sorts?

    http://www.rebloggingdonk.com

    • Raul

      Be careful! She’ll track you down at your place of employment pretending to be Jack McCain’s lawyer if you comment negatively about her!

    • Cindy

      Kind of trashy that she worked her full name into the headline. Like she’s some kind of tabloid celebrity whose whereabouts TheGloss is tracking. Gross.

    • Jennifer Wright

      Cindy – we choose the titles. As we have two different people covering fashion week, both of whom are known, I thought having their names prominently displayed might attract people.

  • marilyn

    Oh god, I couldn’t even get through half this stupid column. Seriously? Who is this woman pretending to be a writer/fashionista? Next!

  • An Acquaintance

    The commenter who called Julia Allison “a human turd” is right on target.

  • CassieJo

    Jesus Christ, this reads like it was poorly translated from another language. Besides the bizarre and tone-deaf mixed metaphors (a line from Wedding Crashers that refers to a penis as a metaphor for “guileless delight??” WTF) the grammar is atrocious and the writing style is grating and entitled. I honestly expect better from this site.

  • JFA

    Poorly written tripe. If you guys ever want The Gloss to become a respected site, you’re going to have to make some decisions about quality & positive association vs. just getting some page hits because people hate this person.

  • Kaitlyn

    She is so youthful and beautiful. How can someone that young already be a seasoned veteran journalist and have 10 seasons under her tiny belt?

    • An Acquaintance

      I guess what they say is true – beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Anyway, that’s an old picture, many, many, many injections ago. In my opinion, she’s not beautiful by any means. She’s above average in the looks department, but certainly not what I’d call beautiful. She IS nuts, though.

    • Kaitlyn

      That’s an old picture? Why not use a current one? What does she look like now?

    • Kaitlyn

      Nevermind, I found her Spreecast. Holy hell, what did she do to her face?

  • Kailynn

    I thought the gloss could have someone cover Fashion Week, not tell me they only go to pay the rent. This is pathetic. NEVER READING THIS SITE AGAIN.

  • josie

    This post is an embarrassment. Julia is a running joke in the fashion industry – as much as she likes to pretend that she’s been to the top tier shows I can assure you no amount of begging from her “agent” will open doors than she’s closed with her boorish behavior and blatant lies.