Tuesday, October 01, 2013

MY LONDON FASHION DIARIES: Stella McCartney, Tom Ford and ME!

My London Fashion Diaries
Throughout my 12 years in the fashion industry I have worked with amazing talents, gone to worldwide exotic locations, and met some incredible people.

Episode 1
One of my favorite fashion events was about 10 years ago back in London when Stella McCartney opened her first flagship store in Mayfair. It was the party that everyone wanted to go to! My first reaction was OMG I’m going to meet PAUL F**KING MCCARTNEY! My second thought, which every fashion junkie can relate to was, what am I going to wear?!
I was a relative newbie in this industry and I wanted to impress. I remember it took me days to pick an outfit and I may have tried on every combination possible in my closet. But I was ready.

I arrived at the red carpet to a sea of paparazzi. Yes, I thought, I’ve finally made it! However, to both my surprise and disappointment no one took my photo. Not a single one. Was this my Andy Sachs (Devil Wears Prada) moment? Was I really just a girl in a schlubby-oversized sweater surrounded by fashion icons? So disappointing.

I didn’t really get a chance to dwell on these fleeting thoughts of self-doubt, because I walked into Stella’s store and boy was I impressed with the design, d├ęcor and size. I remember being told it used to be a Dior showroom back in the 50s or 60s…or was that the Matthew Williamson shop a couple of stores over? I really should write these things down.
With all four floors packed with Stella’s ‘closest’ friends (and the fashion press), it was obviously a highly sought after invite. I started having a few more moments of self-doubt. Why am I here? How the heck did I manage to score an invite? I suppose I was working for the Telegraph Magazine –published every Saturday with The Daily Telegraph newspaper (which outsells The Times). So that was a start. A good start! BTW one of the most exciting parts of the job was working with the journalist and author, Drusilla Beyfus also known as the mother of British Vogue’s editor, Alexandra Shulman.
Alexandra Shulman, editor of British Vogue.

My fav Drusilla Beyfus book.

Drusilla herself was a writer at Vogue before Anna Wintour fired her back in the 80s. I sat directly behind her in our office, I always remember hoping some of her brilliance would rub off on me. She did compliment me on my outfit the other day. I started to regain my confidence. Yes, I thought, I’ve worked hard, I love fashion, and I do belong here.
Ralph Fiennes on the cover Telegraph Magazine styled by Jessica Moazami
Ralph Fiennes on the cover of Telegraph Magazine, styled by ME!

Just then I spotted Tom Ford across the room. OMG, I thought, he was incredibly handsome. With my reinstated confidence I was ready (and also dying) to introduce myself. I smoothed back my hair, put my clutch under my arm, and started to walk towards him. Just then a fellow fashion junkie grabbed my hand and told me that it wasn’t a very British thing to do. You don’t just go up to someone like that and introduce yourself, she said. So instead I just admired him from a distance.

Looking back do I regret not introducing myself? Would he have thought I was a nutter or a groupie? I guess I’ll never know, but I do often like to replay the scene in my head with an alternate ending. One in which I walk up to him, introduce myself, he compliments me on my outfit, I compliment him on his latest fall fashion line. We become friends. Okay, back to reality and to this story...

Besides the fabulous Mr. Ford, also in attendance were Mary McCartney (beautiful in person), Madonna (still rocking it) and Gwyneth Paltrow (lovely hair). Unfortunately, Paul wasn’t there because he was out of town. Totally gutted!

All in all, it was truly an amazing night. I had a marvelous time, even though the paparazzi didn’t take my photo and I might have missed an opportunity to become Tom Ford’s best gal pal, it was still a night to remember. It was, however, not as amazing as the Giorgio Armani party I went to at a future date, but I’ll save that tale for another time.

Looking back now, the funniest part of the whole experience was I can’t for the life of me remember what I wore that night. After all that planning and stressing over what to wear, I have no clue what I was wearing from top to bottom. This actually might be a good thing since I was still developing my style and I didn’t always get it right… but more on that later too.
Tom Ford and Stella McCartney have been photobomb!
The snap that never was!

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