Ok, so Iâ€™m a little late writing a blog post on my recent fashion show (it was March 20th)…but better late than never! Iâ€™ve been so busy with marketing new items from the fashion show, networking, and brainstorming on my next projects that I just had not gotten around to writing this post. So Iâ€™m finally getting it together this week 🙂 First of all, Iâ€™d just like to say that the fashion show went very well and was very well attendedâ€¦we actually sold out! I was very gracious that my partner for this event (boutique owner from Elonâ€™s Fashion Closet) allowed me to join her in planning and hosting this event. She basically showed me the ropes on how to prepare for and then actually run a fashion show. It is definitely A LOT of work and money! But it is a great way to promote your brand while also giving potential and existing customers a good idea of how to utilize your products. So Iâ€™m definitely going to do another one in the near future.
I did learn some valuable lessons that I think could help other boutique owners who may be interested in hosting a fashion show. There are definitely some things I would do differently next time that I know will make things run smoother and help me increase my boutiqueâ€™s sales (which is the ultimate goal of hosting a fashion show in the first place, right??). So check out my list below of lessons learned from my first fashion show.
1) Make sure you have pieces to be modeled on-hand well in advance of the show: OMGâ€¦I was biting my nails leading up to the show because my shipments were lateâ€¦I received both of them the week of the fashion show! This is a huge NO-NO! Having my fashion show pieces on-hand earlier would have allowed more time for my models to try on their outfits prior to the show to make sure everyone could fit everything OK (there were a few who could not fit all of their pieces so I had to make last minute outfit changes, which was a bit stressful). Additionally, there were some pieces I ordered not available that I had already included in the show. So I had to change these at the last minute on the list we provided to the MC for the show. Also, having fashion show pieces well in advance would be extremely helpful for a dress rehearsal, which I talk about in my next lesson learned.
2) Have at least one dress rehearsal prior to the day of the show: We did have a couple of rehearsals where we had the models walk to their selected songs for the show. But it would have been great if we could have had one where the models actually changed into and out of their outfits to be modeled in the show. Additionally, it would have been ideal if we could have had the exact mix that the DJ was planning to use in the show. The combination of this would have really helped us with identifying timing and other potential issues that could impact the show.
3) Have a team in place: Iâ€™m one of those people who enjoys multi-tasking and doing all I can on my own. But I found that this can add an unnecessary level of stress when preparing for and during a fashion show. From this experience, I would say that building and having a fashion show team in place is critical to the success of the event. Hereâ€™s how having a fashion show team can help (even if itâ€™s just one other person helping you):
- Can assist with rehearsals
- Can assist with set-up the day of the show
- Can check on and be with models during the show to make sure they stay on track to keep the show flowing as needed (it was difficult for me to do this because as a host I really needed to tend to the event’s guests and mingle with the crowd)
can assist with setting up your boutique items for display and purchase at the fashion show (following the show I did not have my products set up and people were inquiring about and expressed interest in purchasing some they had seen in the showâ€¦this resulted in some loss sales for my boutique)
AND LAST BUT CERTAINLY NOT LEASTâ€¦â€¦
4) Create a budget and stick to it as much as possible!: Costs for planning a fashion show can add up quickly. You must account for costs such as for food and drinks (if you have this), music/DJ, facility where the event will be held, promotions, photography, shipments for pieces to be modeled in your show, etcâ€¦.it is ESSENTIAL to track closely what youâ€™re spending and assure that you price your fashion show tickets well enough to offset the planning costs.
UPDATE: Adding to this list number 5…collecting email addresses and/or other contact information from guests! I failed at this at my first fashion show. I know I lost out on a number of potential customers. But it’s ok I’ll recover…lesson learned. But I’m trying to save you from doing the same. So definitely add this to your checklist…super important!
I look forward to planning my next fashion showâ€¦.it was fun and I found all the work I had to put into it very fulfilling! Iâ€™m sure there are some lessons learned Iâ€™m not thinking of now but these are the ones that stuck out the most for me. I hope that you find this information helpful and if you are planning to host a fashion show for your boutique I wish you a great deal of success with it…it’s definitely a great way to promote and grow your brand!