Lifestyle blogger, photographer, mother to my son Boden and frenchie Smalls, wife to my hubs Trevor. I built this space in an attempt to inspire you to find your edit and empower you to create the life you desire. Through digital content and honest storytelling, I hope to guide you along the way. Because everyone has an edit, and I'm here to help you find yours.
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I’ve always dreamed about being able to attend New York Fashion Week at some point in my life — and now I can hardly believe this dream is going to become a reality.
This Wednesday I depart from Seattle on a early am flight to NYC for five days of fashion-filled fun.
As I prep mentally physically for this long week ahead, I thought I’d share a little background on the event itself and how I’m getting ready for what I know will be the highlight of my influencer career thus far.
Fashion Month is a four week period that happens twice a year — each February and March — where top designers from all over the world show their latest collections in New York, London, Milan and Paris.
Historically these presentations were shown to buyers, press, industry insiders, celebrities and photographers. But with the rise of social media over the past eight to nine years, bloggers and influencers are now heavily integrated, accounting for 15-20% of runway show seating — and these digitally savvy guys and gals are making a significant impact.
With social followings ranging from the thousands to millions, micro and macro influencers are extremely instrumental in helping brands bring awareness to their products.
For example —
If Betty the Blogger gets invited to 10 shows during New York Fashion Week and rocks several head-to-toe looks throughout her trip — posting photos, tagging what brands she’s wearing — her 50K followers are likely to purchase the very same (or similar) pieces right away, resulting in major sales for the brands Betty’s wearing and a percentage of sales in the form of commission to Betty (thanks to affiliate platforms like ShopStyle Collective and RewardStyle).
This, this is how some bloggers and influencers have managed to make a career out of this hobby — and why influencers are such a vital part of many brands’ NYFW marketing strategies (and budgets).
#FunFact: the influencer industry is projected to grow to $10 billion from the $2 billion ad spend that was reported in 2017
So as you can see, the Fashion Week event series can be very successful for both the designers and brands presenting new product and the influencers attending and promoting the product.
It’s also an excellent platform for networking and creating new partnerships: brands are seeking influencers that align with their mission and aesthetic to promote their product for sales, and influencers are seeking brands that align with their mission and aesthetic to promote their product for a profit. Same goes for press agents as well.
Now that you know the huge role influencers play during Fashion Month, you’re probably thinking — how do they get invited?
Well, as a macro influencer like my faves Mary Lawless Lee of Happily Grey or Jacey Duprie of Damsel in Dior, this comes easy. Designers and brands want these icons present at all of their shows to guarantee the biggest reach to the masses, so they actually get personal invites from Tom Ford and Chanel.
But for micro influencers like myself, a bit of leg work is required. You’ve got to put together your pitch (how you’ll bring value by being present at a show) and conduct some serious outreach to as many PR contacts that hold the invitations for each shows you can get ahold of. Luckily there are resources like Modem Online, GPS Radar by Launchmetrics where you’re able to find show details and contacts for each.
Here’s what I pitched over the last month:
Hi [PR Contact]!
My name is Cortney, the creator behind the Seattle-based blog and brand The Grey Edit — an evolving collection of style across fashion, life and travel that aims to inspire women to find their own edit.
I’m reaching out as I’ll be in New York City 9/5 – 9/10 for NYFW this season and I’m incredibly interested in reporting on and attending any runway shows, presentations or events you’re involved with under [PR Agency].
Here’s a bit about me and my brand —
I have a growing overall audience of 8K (with a 17% monthly growth rate on Instagram) consisting of primarily women in their mid 20s to mid 30s who aim to enhance various aspects of their life with style. I create content to help them achieve this. In addition to my sphere of influence, I receive on average 12K visitors a month to my blog and have an email list of over 500 subscribers.
The focus on my blog is two part — first, educating women about the importance of finding their own personal style — or edit — and second, integrating “elevated basics” into their wardrobe to complement their edit.
I suggest the idea of investing in versatile, quality pieces that can take them from season to season and encourage having a little fun by trying out new trends and styles to elevate their everyday look.
My style can be described as classic but modern, simple with added edge. I often wear greys and blacks and my home is decorated in whites and neutrals. I’m all about investing in the classics, while keeping up with fun trends. I love to mix high and low price points and share wearable styles for the street.
I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and do look forward to hearing from you soon!
While I don’t consider myself to be an expert in pitching, I did see a great amount of positive response from the contacts I reached out to and now have a packed week of events ahead.
So if you’re an influencer needing help for next time, feel free to reference this general pitch as you craft yours. And be sure to tweak per email to make your message more relevant to the reader.
So yeah! I’m freaking going!
And ever since about a month ago when I made the decision to buy plane tickets to NYC and start my outreach I’ve been one excited stress ball.
I’ve always been one to make packing difficult, but in this case where I hope to rock numerous outfits per day for various shows, photo shoots and events, it’s been a much tougher feat — not to mention the fact that I’ll be swimming in a sea of the most fashionable, best dressed crowd.
must. dress. amazingly.
But because I’m a somewhat organized person, I’ve been staying on top of the prepwork.
Here’s what I’ve been doing:
Searching NYFW street style on Pinterest, browsing blog posts from past attendees and studying the trends that were shared during spring for how to dress this fall.
Assessing what I own, borrowing from friends, pulling from brands and buying a few key pieces to stay relevant here and there. And because I’m a nerd and have a love for creating digital things on all Google platforms — I’m using this deck to plan off of :).
To save costs, I was able to use points for a plane tickets and am SO grateful to be able to have a friend who lives in the city that’s allowing me to crash at her place for the majority of my stay. To cover the remaining two days, I secured a cost effective Airbnb and hotel.
I’m also grateful to be able to coordinate plans with a few other local bloggers who will be attending as well! We have some fun brunches, photo shoots and dinners planned. Get excited for my New York City Travel Guide to follow post trip!
Of course along with the clothing, comes the beautifying! This week I’ve been going on various appointments to get a fresh set of dip nails, new balayage and threading of eyebrows. In addition, I’ve been trying to eat those greens and get in a good of cardio via running and Peloton and toning via Pure Barre.
And you most definitely cannot forget about the tech. My DSLR, multiple SD cards, my laptop, charging devices (including portable) and a well oiled system on my phone that enables me to capture, edit and post on the go. There’s going to be endless opportunities for content I’m SO excited!
And last but certainly not least — making sure I’m getting ample amounts of sleep during these last few days leading up to my departure, and spending lots of quality time with my faves Trevor and Smalls, who will be cheering me on from home. I feel so lucky to have such an incredible support system. Trevor’s been giving me tips and motivation and I can’t wait to report back on how successful his help was — and more importantly how he will be joining me along with Smalls next year :).
I’m ecstatic for what’s ahead this week — the new fashion, the new people and the new experience — and feel beyond blessed to be able to have this opportunity.
Be sure to follow along on my Instagram to live NYFW as a newbie with me — and I look forward to sharing all that I learn with you once I return!
Love to you all — and please wish me luck!
// cb ✌????
Lifestyle blogger, photographer, mother to my son Boden and frenchie Smalls, wife to my hubs Trevor.
I built this space in an attempt to inspire you to find your edit and empower you to create the life you desire. Through digital content and honest storytelling, I hope to guide you along the way. Because everyone has an edit, and I'm here to help you find yours.
Get To Know Me
Mother. Wife. Blogger. Photographer. I built this space in an attempt to inspire you to find your edit and empower you to create the life you desire. Through digital content and honest storytelling, I hope to guide you along the way. Because everyone has an edit, and I'm here to help you find yours.
Hi, I'm Cortney
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