an average person’s fashion week experience

October 6, 2015

You know how amazing things happen and you think they are so incredible that you will never forget them for as long as you live? And then you live a little more and you realize you can’t remember anything? I don’t remember any of my kids’ first words. I started this blog because I could not believe that I could forget something that momentous. I don’t remember the date that chris proposed to me, even though that was one of the best days of my life! So, needless to say, I am still reveling in the wake of my New York trip, and I have told so very many people all about it already, but part of me is afraid that I am going to forget the details. The fun, amazing, unreal details of this trip. So even if you are all done with my #jihaedoesnewyork posts- these are for me to reread when i am 80.
(Let’s be real, I’ll probably forget some major details by the end of the year. The marbles are pretty loose up here.)
My first full and official day in New York started with me looking out my hotel window and noticing rain. Oh glorious rain. So I got my face and hair ready for the day, which did not take long because I am a lazy bum. But I wore eye liner. Cause New York deserves my best face! I put on a jacket, grabbed my umbrella, and headed out to 5th Avenue to go look for a little black bag and some jewelry to wear to Marissa Webb’s show later on in the day.
I had a free continental breakfast of coffee and croissants (gluten be damned! i was on vacation!) at the cute restaurant downstairs, and then I felt fueled to explore the city. As soon as I got outside, I turned on my Pandora to superloud, listened to some good ol’90s rap music, and felt like I was walking the streets of Toronto as a young, bright eyed high schooler. i did not have a care in the world. No that’s a lie. I was slightly terrified that I would look insane and out of place being at a fashion show later on in the day. but I had to keep reminding myself that I wasn’t at this fashion show because I am in the fashion industry. I am a stay at home mom who wears clearance clothes from target. They didn’t pick me cause I’m chic. They picked me because a random generator popped my name out! 
As I was walking around, I was definitely overdressed for the rainy appearance of the day. I was hoping it would be freezing cold but it was kinda humid and muggy. I was regretting my clothing choices as I was sweating along Fifth Avenue, but someone asked where my jacket was from. Old Navy. Kids section. On clearance. $6. Fashion week was starting off just right!
I got a text from Wendy asking if I got in ok and that we would go to Marissa’s show together at about 2. So fantastic. I stopped at Stumptown Roasters for a delicious decaf Americano. I love me some Starbucks, but since I was on an adventure, I decided I would only drink coffee from independent coffee shops (or small chains! I guess Stumptown is not as small as I thought according to the interweb) for the duration of my time in the Big Apple.
I went into a bunch of beautiful stores, but couldn’t find what I was looking for. I did run into a CVS and bought a lipstick, something I haven’t done in over a decade. Jeehon usually just gives me lipstick. Where was my sister when I needed her most?!!?! Stupid Singapore! Why are you so far away!?!? My next major purchase after the lipstick was at the Lego store. They had a little $5 set of the Statue of Liberty that I knew Topher would love. Speaking of my kids- it was Thursday. The big two were at school and Chris had to go to work later in the afternoon. So Lily and Topher would be going to their wonderful Aunt Lindsay’s after school and spending the night there, and Mia would be spending the night at my precious friend, Christin’s. Chris worked until 2am every night that I was gone (except on Wednesday) so I had a slew of my finest friends and family watching the kids and making my trip a reality! Thank you Lindsay and Christin for taking my kids!!!
At about 11:00am, I got a text from Wendy asking if I could do lunch at noon. Absolutely. I walked around some more, still looking for final pieces to make my outfit look a little bit more awesome for the runway show that was quickly approaching. Then I got a text from wendy saying that we would go straight to Marissa’s show after lunch. OK! I texted back. then at about 11:40 it dawned on me that maybe I should be dressed and ready to go by noon. I texted Wendy back to see if that was the case, and she replied in the affirmative. Aw crap. I was about ten  minutes away from the hotel, and now it was 11:50. and I was not dressed. So I ran. If you know me- I don’t run. Ever. But I did not want the first time that I met Wendy to be five minutes after I was supposed to be meeting her! So I ran. And I was sweating. And a little bit peeing. Cause that’s what happens when I run. Cause I’ve had three kids and apparently my bladder kind of sucks.
I got to my hotel room at 11:55. Stripped off all my clothes, put some more face on, put on a grey dress (a clearance find from TJ Maxx for $5!), with black leggings (from Forever 21, regular price like $4), and some black booties (also clearance from Kohls for $7), and a black blazer (my sister’s from Korea, probably about $20. so my entire outfit probably cost as much as most people’s belts at the fashion show), and ran down to the hotel lobby by 12:02. I may not be a fashion plate, but I wasn’t going to make Wendy wait for me!  I beat her by 3 minutes. Success!
So, again, deciding what to wear to the show was the most stressful part of my trip (next to finding five people to watch my kids). I debated whether I should buy something new. And EXPENSIVE. But I had to remind myself that I didn’t win this contest because people liked my style or my clothes. No one was expecting anything from me. So, I got over myself and I picked stuff I already had (and clearly did not pay much money for) that I felt would go with the Marissa Webb vibe, and that was it. There were a good number of people at the show wearing the designer’s beautiful clothes. But lots of people were wearing white button down shirts (MW loves her some button down shirts!), and pretty normal looking stuff. I didn’t stand out in a good way or a bad way. Relief.
I met Wendy and Nina, who works with Wendy, in the hotel lobby. We chatted and immediately became blood sisters. Like we got out a little pocket knife and exchanged blood, that’s how tight our bond was. Just kidding. That’s creepy. But we seriously all hit it off right away, decided we were all food sharers, jumped into an Uber (my first time ever), and grabbed lunch at La Petite Abeille. That’s ‘little bee’ in French. I’m so glad I got a minor in French from U of T. Speaking of the University of Toronto- Nina is from Toronto. And Wendy used to work at Wells Fargo, and I bank with Wells Fargo. See? Deep, meaningful connections. But seriously, these women were the bees knees and I was so dang happy to be with them all weekend long.
here we are at La Petite Abeille. Nina, Wendy, and Me (right to left)
I’m wearing lipstick. But you can’t really tell. Which begs the question- why did I even bother?!?
After we ate some delicious mussels, Brussel sprouts, a salmon burger, and fries, we headed to the Marissa Webb show. We got there 10 minutes late, which made me want to poo my pants, because I thought if they were punctual- then we missed it. But fortunately they were very fashionably late getting started. I was seated in the Friends and Family section behind Marissa’s parents, and I felt like the absolute luckiest girl in the world.
The show was stunning, unreal, ethereal, beautiful, and a little bit bad ass. I didn’t hardly take any pictures because I could not believe I was there!
this was before the show started.

And this is the adorable, amazing, genius herself- Marissa Webb, at the end of her show. The two figures on the bottom left of the picture are her parents, who adopted Marissa and her three siblings. Wonderful people! I google stalked them a little too hard before my trip so I was too nervous to say hi to them, even though I just wanted to hug them.
After the show, we got to go backstage and meet Marissa. Don’t be dumb. Don’t be weird. Don’t be dumb. Don’t be weird. We said Hi. We hugged. I don’t remember the rest. hopefully I wasn’t dumb or weird. Who knows. I did meet her brother, who did all the music for her show, which is just plain cool. I love meeting people who think family is important. Because in this world, there are plenty of people who don’t. And you know I know that first hand. And it’s heartbreaking.
We went back to the hotel, ate some more Brussel sprouts, and chocolate, and ice cream. Then we went to Gap, Inc. and got to see the Banana Republic team do a hair and make up run-through for their up-coming presentation on Saturday. Marissa was obviously there, and I just felt SO TIRED for her. It must have been so exhausting getting ready for a runway show, but then to turn around and get ready to display Banana’s Spring and Summer collection just a few days later! Seriously, this woman is a torrent of creativity and energy! We did some spicy tequila shots, looked around and saw the oufits that the models were going to wear, and even the outfits that the servers were going to wear (they thought of everything!). The coolness of this whole experience was exhausting. And it was only day 1 of 3 of awesomeness.


an average person’s fashion week experience


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