Paris is the fashion capital of the world, rivaled only by New York City. Being the fashion forward group that we are my friends and I sought out this rumored street that was apparently lines with store from all the biggest designers. After about an hour of wondering around the Paris subway we stumbled upon perhaps the most couture street in the entire world. Fendi, Gucci, Chanel, Valentino, Nina Ricci, Jimmy Choo! We were in fashionista paradise but unfortunately paradise closed at 6 PM. We couldn’t venture into the stores but admiring from a far was not a problem. In the store windows were dresses that had been featured in this fall’s ads and editorial spreads in Vogue. I literally had pictures of these garments on my wall in my room and now they were only a panel of glass away from me. There is likely no way I will ever be able to afford these brands so being able to see the products through the windows, and in Paris of all places, was surely enough for me to feel as privileged as the people who can afford $1000+ purses. If it is possible to live vicariously through a mannequin than that is most certainly what I was doing. The absolute most exciting siting for me was the Paris headquarters for Elite Model Management. This is the same company the winners of America’s Next Top Model were signed to for several seasons. This is the company I had dreamed of being signed to until I realized I was not going to grow past 5 feet tall. This is the company that makes dreams come true! Well, that might be a bit dramatic but I was actually blown away to actually be standing in front of a building where so many amazing careers were launched.
When walking past the ornate Dolce & Gabbana display I noticed a sign in the window for Paris’ Fashion Night Out. I had heard of Fashion Night Out in New York and knew it was a huge event there (it even has an entire Gossip Girl episode dedicated to it) but I had no idea it occurred world wide. FNO was only two days away and we would still be in Paris. Clearly, I needed to attend this event and it obviously did not take much persuading to talk my friends into checking it out.
September 7th is the day that changed my life forever and made it quite clear to me what I wanted for my future. Megan, Lindsay, Gretchen, and I took the subway around 9 or 10 PM towards the glamourous street we had found just days before. There had to be at least a thousand people, men and women, chicly dressed in all black ensembles, sporting vibrant statement accessories and the current season’s popular purses. We walked past each and every store which were hosting parties to the most beautiful people I have ever seen. Our eyes were pealed for a celebrity citing. I was so sure we would spot Madonna somewhere since she was the spokesmodel for D&G that season but the party there seemed to be dying down. There was screaming and people dashing madly towards Chanel so we booked it in that direction. This was possibly the best decision I think I have made the entire trip.
Squeezed onto the sidewalk, smashed between trees and fellow fashionistas, I caught a glance at THE Karl Lagerfeld, designer for Chanel and fashion icon. I even managed to snap a few blurry pictures of him before he was escorted into his car.
As Lindsay, Gretchen, and I freaked out over the amazingness that had just unfolded before us Megan genuinely asks, “Who is Karl Lagerfeld?” To keep her from being murdered (since everyone who heard her gave her the death stare) we ran and just explained along the way.
Being in Paris that night around all of those people who were so passionate about something many people consider unconventional and unproductive made me realize that as long as I am happy in life and have a roof over my head, I am not going to care one bit about what people think of me. So what if I want to be a famous actress one day, so what if I want to become a freelance makeup artist, so what if I want to learn how to perform piercings, and so what if I am only in college to have a backup plan. I am living my life and loving every single second of it because I am living it the way I want. Fashion Night Out began a new chapter in the history of Amanda.