Chic Report

Fashion Etiquette 101! With Carola Niemann, Fashion Director At Cover

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How should you behave sitting front row? Cover’s fashion director Carola Niemann brushes us up on FASHION ETIQUETTE 101! 

What’s the proper time to arrive at a fashion show?
To be on time, someone should show up 10 or 15 minutes before the scheduled time.  

But that sounds so early!
First of all, it’s fun to sit there and watch everyone come in. Secondly, I think it’s good behavior to be on time—it’s a respectful thing to do.

What’s the longest you’ve ever waited for a show to start?
I’ve waited 45 minutes. It’s a very big stretch for all of us to go from one show to another. Everyone shouldn’t be delayed just because one show runs over.

Have you ever thought about walking out of a show?
Yes. I think there was one show where I really did walk out, because I really wanted to see something else at the same time. I had waited for so long already!

Who’s your favorite type of person to sit next to at shows?
I like to sit next to the person who also wants to be watching the show.

When chatting up a fashion show neighbor, what’s a good icebreaker?
The weather is always good! I like to talk about shoes, or to give a compliment—a compliment always makes for a nice icebreaker.

What kinds of people make the most annoying fashion show neighbors? 
I don’t really like to sit next to people who are talking all the time, and not concentrating on the show.

How rude is it to check your iPhone?
It depends! A lot of us are very busy with things at our offices at the same time. I, for example, like to tag music while the show is going on. I use Shazam.

What do you do with that music?  
I like to get myself back in the mood of the show, through the songs that were playing. One of my absolute favorite things is to make a playlist after every fashion week that just gets me back in the mood. I get creative ideas while listening to those playlists.

Clapping at the end of show: yes or nein?
You should always clap at the end of a show! It’s respectful to do so. Respect for everyone involved in the show. from the guy who does the makeup, to the guy who pins the dresses. It’s all work, and you should honor and respect all of it.

When is it important—or apropos—to go backstage and say hi to the designer?
It’s essential if you have time, and liked the show. If you have the chance to go back and have a little chat, you should do that!

Is it OK for editors are to eat the food for the models and backstage folks?
No, the editors shouldn’t! The food backstage is for a different crowd. 

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