London Fashion Week Special: Avoid a Fashion Week FROW Pas

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In the ten years I spent working as a fashion industry minion I witnessed many a “Oh FROW you didn’t!” cringey moment. If you find your bum hovering over the holy ground of catwalk shows, you better know how to style it out. Follow my top tips to survive and thrive front row at fashion week:

1. The Long and Short of It. 

There’s a distinctive auburn haired A-List superstar, who’s spun a whole career out of her flowing tresses. Shame that famous mane isn’t her natural colour. How do I know? Micro skirt. Front row. No knickers. She’s lucky the fashion industry has more class than to take an up the skirt shot. We’ll just gossip about it for years instead. Remember you will be sat down with people staring at you: dress appropriately. And wax.

2. The Hot Seat.

If you’re planning on pinching a front row pew and brazening it out, make sure you don’t pick the one reserved for Anna Wintour. Career suicide. I heard the young fashionista who broke this golden rule is now working on a Gloucestershire goat farm. Nobody survives the Nuclear Wintour. Bye bye fashion.

3. Recycle.

A FROW frequenter will empty their goodie bag of what they want – usually the mineral water with all those hot lights – and ditch the rest. Clinging to freebies like a grinning loon is a clear sign you’re above your seat station. Those knee-deep in VIP goodie bags don’t give a Scott’s fig and hazelnut dressing about a free lipstick. A true FROW pro will give their stash to their assistant, or leave it for the fashion students who sneaked in the back. It’s the charitable thing to do. Those students have probably been interning for free for months, they could really benefit from that organic make up: they could eat it.

4. Don’t Grin and Bear It.

Have you seen Anna Wintour smile on the front row? Victoria Beckham? Olivia Palermo? No, that’s because these ladies are professionals. The FROW is their rightful throne. They may allow a slight upward curl of their lip. The hint of a pout. That’s it. Forget taking that selfie. Fashion is serious business, people. Showing your teeth is for the dentist. Smile and you mark yourself out as an overexcited amateur. Plus it gives you face wrinkles.

5. You Old Bag.

Don’t waste a seat on your handbag. I watched a popstar do this once. Nestling their £10k treasure sac into the adjoining seat. The PRs went into meltdown, as they tried to decide who would be bumped from the front row for a bag. Ripples of shock ran through the room. One less seat is one less ticket. Fashionistas loved the handbag, but hated the popstar.

6. A Wee Issue.

Don’t let your dog wee on the catwalk. I saw some diva dogs in my fashion time; bulldogs flown business class, pugs put up in 5 star hotel suites, and chauffer driven Chihuahuas. But I’ve never seen anything quite so distasteful as a pooch peeing all over the runway as a show started. Two of the models slid in it. Catwalk carnage. Forget the puppy, the owner needed to be on a tighter leash.

7. Tweet Dreams.

You made it front row. You are a fashion goddess among mere matching outfit mortals. Own it, baby. Tell the world. Tweet. Post. Share. Though keep it humble, yeah. No one likes a bragger.

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