Lauren David Peden Dishes New York Fashion Week Secrets


Simply put, Rue La La Contributing Editor Lauren David Peden is a Fashion Week pro. For the past eight years she’s been right in the fashion trenches, reporting straight from the front row – this week alone, she’ll be attending more than 80 shows. So, with her veteran status, I couldn’t help but ask for a few fashion week tips. From front row faux pas to clutches vs. hobos (and even the curation of her How To Dress For NYFW Boutique on Rue), she shares all the Fashion Week secrets I’ve been dying to know.

I want everything from your NYFW Boutique – can you tell us how you went about the curation?
First, I started with what I – and other editors, stylists, and fashion insiders I know – actually wear to the shows. So lots of black, lots of big, stylish bags, and chic yet comfortable shoes. I also wanted to include some of the big fall trends that I love, such as graphic print dresses, metallics for day, oversized sweaters, and the season’s new color: oxblood.

Does your style change depending on whether it’s a morning, afternoon, or evening show?
During Fashion Week, I usually leave the house for a 9AM or 10AM show and don’t get home until 9PM or 10PM, so there’s no time to change during the day – even if I’m attending a party at night. Thankfully, most of the other people covering the shows are in the same boat, so we tend to dress in a way that’s appropriate for every occasion.

Since you’re running from tent to tent, it must be hard to wear heels 24/7. Do you tough it out or wear flats when going from show to show?
I’m a huge fan of wedges and flatforms, and I also love lace-up oxfords in fun colors, which happen to be a major fall trend.

Hats were a big trend this year, but are they a fashion faux pas when it comes to the front row?
YES! This is actually a pet peeve of mine. Remember that brouhaha a few seasons ago when Tavi wore a bow hat in the front row of Dior Couture and the people behind her couldn’t see? Not cool. I’m a big fan of hats, but everything has its time and place – and Fashion Week is not the time for hats that are so ginormous they obscure other people’s view. So go ahead and wear your hat – just take it off when you sit down.

It’s still pretty hot out there. How do you work Fall 2012’s trends without getting overheated?
Looking cute and staying cool can be really hard when it’s 85 degrees with 90 percent humidity. (Yuck!) That’s where accessories and color come in, all of which allow you to rock the fall trends without piling on the layers. It’s the perfect time to test-drive that new burgundy handbag or those metallic jeans.

When it comes to the shows is it better to go with a large, structured hobo or a clutch?
I actually like to do both, and carry a large, unstructured cross-body bag for day with a dressier clutch tucked inside. Then at night, if I’m going to a party, I check the big bag and just carry the clutch.

Where’s your favorite place to grab a bite to eat during NYFW?
Uptown, near the tents, I like Lincoln Ristorante (pricey but delicious Italian food), Goodness, the healthy pop-up restaurant that model Elettra Wiedemann opens during NYFW in Robert, and PJ Clarke’s for my Fashion Week burger fix. Downtown (near Milk Studios), I always make a point to eat at least one meal at Zampa and the Chelsea Market, where you can find everything from sushi to classic NYC deli fare, along with Jacques Torres chocolates. (Because a woman cannot live on CLIF Bars alone!)

And the most essential question of them all: where’s the best place to hail a cab around the tents?
ALWAYS walk away from the front door of the show and head a block or two uptown or downtown, in the opposite direction of traffic. So, at Lincoln Center you’d want to walk uptown on Broadway or Columbus. As a believer in karma, once I get a cab, I have the driver pull over in front of other cab-hailing showgoers and ask if they’d like to share my taxi to the next show. I just ask them to pay it forward by doing the same for someone else next time. Who says fashionistas aren’t nice?

Our How to Dress for NYFW: Picks by Lauren David Peden Boutique opens Friday, September 7, at 11AM ET.

By Keriann Coffey, Associate Blog Editor

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NYFW: The Fashion Outside the Tents