Who needs fashion when you really need sleep?
It is the end of Paris Fashion Week and I am fashion weak. Most everyone knows about the fashion shows and some pictures of after parties but what is not being openly discussed is that the fashion calendar is exhausting. The fashion week circuit is only really experienced by a few editors, designers, public relations teams and the occasional celebrity that is either supporting a brand contract or begging for press. The fashion diehards are sacrificing personal relationships, normal schedules and above all... sleep.
As the global fashion market is shrinking and seasoned experts are becoming extinct there is an emphasis to not miss anything whether it be a show, party or store opening. A tweet or Instagram is being valued at the same level as a mega production photo shoot that took three months to plan and employed upwards of 50 people. Just when you think you have begun to regulate your schedule and try for a good night's sleep in a foreign bed; something comes up that you just cannot miss like the Oscars' red carpet. The media is everywhere and Instagrams or style sites can fill in the blanks the following day, but what if you work where there is a need to be on top of any opportunity to tweet a look? Heaven forbid you didn't attend someone's after party and you lost a chance to photograph a celebrity or comment on the new designer store. In my experience, the party you missed or moment of brand exposure on a red carpet not viewed in real-time was ALWAYS the best. I have yet to meet the fashion person who says to me, "I went to bed at 9 p.m. and got the best night's sleep, thank God I didn't have to go to the Marc Jacob's show and sit next to Sofia Coppola." No insult to Sofia, I am sure she is lovely and I admire her work but my point is I also love my bed or more specifically my mind.
Years ago, while dating a war journalist, I would always get so mad at him because he could not enjoy a vacation if somewhere in the world something was getting blown up. The TV, radio, and computer all tuned in while a beautiful beach or, more importantly, I was waiting to spend time with him. Change the priority to fashion and imagine that I am now that same person but rather than enjoy my personal life, I am glued to Style.com, WWD, StyleList, Facebook, Twitter and whatever other outlet a fashion junkie can find. The fashion world is feeding us a steady stream of content that is surely not healthy. No longer are the days that you would wait for a magazine to arrive or read a fashion review at your leisure. Everything is faster, harder, more concentrated. But, at the end of the day, where are you laying your head and is your mind hard-wired to hurry up and sleep so that you can get onto the next fashion moment?
I propose that from now on fashion outlets have a disclaimer much like the tobacco industry or gambling industry. We've all seen the ads that say if you have a gambling problem call this number or the packaging for cigarettes with rotten lungs. Maybe it is time that during the launch of a celebrity collaboration there is a disclaimer by H & M that says, "Warning: you may get crushed to death at this sale or at the very least shoved." Possibly the E! network can have "Beware: if you watch all this red carpet programming than you may have a bad day at work tomorrow because you need sleep." In an industry famous for bad habits, the time has come for Chanel to march an army of models down the runway wearing bio reading accessories with stadium billboards that state "this model slept 8.5 hours, ate a healthy meal, exercised a bit and is happy." However the fashion world develops and at what point the players on the inside track fall apart, I keep thinking about all the rumors about why Anna Wintour wears sunglasses to shows... She doesn't want people to see her expressions with the collections, the lights are too bright, the paparazzi are everywhere... but I always come back to my favorite rumor: She's napping! I hope she is and if that is the case then she is my fashion hero.
Disclaimer: If you read this and you are tired, GO TO SLEEP!