BARNEYS AND BALENCIAGAS: MY SIMON DOONAN STORY
"If you're a nice person and you work hard, you get to go shopping at Barneys. It's the decadent reward." - Sarah Jessica Parker (SJP)
Kicking off NYFW with Barney's NY and Simon Doonan to celebrate the release of his new book, The Asylum, seems as unreal as my interview on The Window, a digital portal into one of the world's most prestigious and luxurious department stores. It was also my second time meeting Simon in the flesh (the first time dates back to 2009 when I was just but a wee online marketing intern at MTV Networks/Logo); you simply can't imagine how elated I was to finally meet him again -- so much so that I pushed my flight up by a day!
I arrived especially early on the day of just so I could get some extra face time with my sartorial idol -- and that I certainly did. As time came for Simon to do his reading, I was so focused on his fungal toe encounter with Tom Ford that I barely nibbled on the bounty of scones and gourmet parfait sitting (and taunting) right in front of me.
Soon after my ephemeral reverie at Barney's and meeting with Simon was over, I began to voraciously devour and savor every morsel the book had to offer. Much like Beautiful People (also better known as Nasty!), The Asylum is pure anecdotal adrenaline through all of Simon's senses. It doesn't get any better than envisioning Anna Wintour picking out ceiling plaster from Suzy Menke's hair at a Michael Kor's show or the time that Simon's fashion journalist friend futilely attempted to interview Rei Kawakubo of Comme Des Garçon.
Although humor runs rampant throughout the book, the more poignant moments emerge when Simon goes deeper and more introspective. He grieves the future of the fashion industry, upon finding himself amongst a table of interns whom descend from well-connected families and the ilk. Coming from a modest, working-class upbringing myself, I absolutely agree that the fashion world would lose its grit and glamor without our kind.
This need for slags brings me to my Balenciaga buckle strap boot purchase. After learning from the Barney's PR team that these boots are in their last round of production, I made a beeline to the nearest location and found myself fawning over them -- face-to-face. I purchased them without any hesitation, with the understanding that this would be a collectible investment. There's a reason why I am a huge proponent of investment purchases; each time I make one, I am reminded of all the hard work, the harrowing struggles, the plethora of hand-me downs that it took to get me here. It's a beacon of triumph and hope that allows me to live the fashion fantasy.
As Diana Vreeland once said, “Fashion must be the most intoxicating release from the banality of the world." I couldn't agree more.
Pictures taken from This Fruit Blogs, Out.com, Instagram