What It’s Like to be a Buyer at Fashion Week

What It’s Like to be a Buyer at Fashion Week
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It might feel like fashion week is all about bloggers, the street style scene and #OOTD selfies, but there’s actually still a whole lot of serious business that goes on behind the scenes, and no one knows that better than the buyers. Every major department stores and online boutique sends buying representatives to the shows, where they bank on–and buy–the pieces they think will be big. By both selecting the styles spotted on the runway, and attending private appointments, these are the people who pick what we’ll be shopping for next season.

MORE: 79 Incredible Model-Off-Duty Street Style Outfits 

To find out exactly what NYFW entails for a buyer, store owner/stylist/buyer Elyse Walker—the woman behind FWRD, an online shopping destination that stocks Givenchy, Isabel Marant, Phillip Lim, a host of other luxe labels—photographed her Fashion Week VIP access.

Keep clicking to check out Elyse Walker’s buyer diary! 

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Day one: I picked a fur cape and elysewalker Los Angeles fringe booties for the first (freezing!) day of NYFW.
Show schedule: Jonathan Simkhai, Cushnie et Ochs, Tome, Ulla Johnson.

Day one: During New York Fashion Week a lot of people think it’s only about the runway, but there is so much more to do for stylists and buyers during the event. We take countless buying appointments from all the top names in the industry, and keep an eye out for rising stars. I love these wallets at M2Malletier for fall 2015--I will take two of each please!

Day two: My go-to breakfast for busy days: Avocado, Chia Bar, and a coffee. I carry the bars with me in my handbag so I always have a healthy snack on hand. The third day of NYFW had me heading to the Zimmermann show and private appointments today.
Show schedule: Zimmermann.

Day two: While watching runway shows I'm always making note of the styles my customers would buy and forecasting the trends to stock up on. We'll definitely be getting this look in stock--Mara Hoffman knows how to make a woman look (and feel!) beautiful.

Day three: More private appointments, and a few big shows tonight. This may have been the coldest fashion week I've ever experienced. Pretty sure I had warm soup for lunch every single day.
Show schedule: Adam Lippes, Dion Lee, Mara Hoffman, Herve Leger, Alexander Wang, Altuzarra.


Day four: Today's schedule's looking good.
Show schedule: Prabal Gurung, Altuzarra.

Day four: That shot is of all the runway looks from the Altuzarra show. They have display boards filled with every look from the show so the buyers can reference back to their favorite looks.

Day four: Backstage beauty kits have nothing on my morning routine!

Day five: This iridescent green at Cushnie et Ochs is such an incredible shade for fall. I'm predicting this look will be particularly popular.
Show schedule: Adeam, Cushnie et Ochs.

Day six: Dean and Deluca makes for a quick and delicious lunch stop between appointments.

Day seven: I know from experience that my customers love seeing Tamara Mellon's stilettos in the store, so seeing the designer's upcoming collection is always a priority at fashion week.
Show schedule: Rodarte and private appointments.

Day seven: Here's a peek at the Tamara Mellon's fall 2015 offering--great, isn't it?

Day seven: Neutrals are always a safe bet when buying--they're a wardrobe staple and never go out of style. I popped into the Brunello Cucinello showroom to stock up. After fashion week, my team and I immediately start placing orders for the season ahead.
Show schedule: J.Mendel and private appointments.

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