Glad you found it helpful. Yes, I was a nervous wreck before my first one and didn't have a clue what it would be like. Every show will be a little different but if I can take some of the fear of the unknown away then that's great :)
Thank you SO much for an invaluable article. I loved every word of it. Great advice for hopefully near future reference. In preparation for a show, do you showcase a certain collection or show as much as possible in the time allotted? I loved the idea of an assistant familiar with your pieces during the chaos. Do you lace by yourself or do you have help? Would the last position in the lineup be the best for corset wear because of time involved in dressing - or first? Which position is the most desirable if time weren't an issue? So many questions!
My first show was unexpected so it was more a collection of random samples but the second was a little more cohesive. In future I'd try and make it more of a collection. It's tricky for us I think as corsets take so long to make, so for a one person corset business producing the usual couple of collections a year is pretty cost and time prohibitive.
I had some help but ended up doing most of the lacing myself as I had a last minute change of assistant and she wasn't very familiar with lacing. It was do-able but stressful so definitely make sure you have someone arranged in advance and give them a few training sessions to give them time to learn how to do things how you like them.
It's going to depend on the show though. My shows were general fashion so the other dressers didn't know how to lace but if it was a more alternative event you'd probably be more likely to get people who could muck in.
First as I mentioned is definitely the easiest as you have loads of time for dressing, However the last spot is probably the most memorable.
How workable it is depends on how well organised the show is and how many models there are. If every model is on for every designer then it's going to very hard going being anything other than first, unless they have breaks scheduled in (which none of the shows I've done have had).
Of course if it's a solo show then it's not and issue, but I left that out as being unlikely for a first event.
Any other questions fire away. It's one of those things I think most of us are clueless about until we do them unless we've been to college on a fashion course. So I'm really pleased to be able to pass on a bit of info.
Thank you! More questions . . . Would you have been able to supply your own models for the shows, or did you absolutely have to use models supplied? It just seems so much easier and quicker to supply your own, especially in the corset arena so that your models could be fitted and ready to go without the chaos. (Although I would think that the chaos would be so stressful, and yet a challenge and fun knowing that the other designers were challenged in that same way.) Keeping your cool seems to be the name of the game., especially if your 2nd model , say, came off the runway 1 minute prior to your change. Argh. For your accessories, skirts, hose, etc. did you construct to great quality or did you use synthetics that would coordinate but yet at least save on expenses in that way?
It might be possible in a small show, but in something more organised they'll want to arrange the models themselves. Of course, types of shows, how professional they are and who is organising them is going to vary a lot. And of course, great photographic models are not necessarily good catwalk models - so if they're experienced picking models for a show then they'll probably have a better idea of what to look for than you or I would.
I often make outfits rather than just corsets so these are presented to show that. I pay just as much attention to the skirts. Although there are a couple of rush jobs in there, It's up to you. Some people show corsets with just plain knickers to concentrate on the corset.
Thank you so much for answering! The knickers idea is great. That would be extremely helpful to me. I understand what you are saying about the models too. Walking a catwalk is surely much different than posing for photos. Thank you again for being so helpful and straight forward. :)
Definitely a good idea to team with others. To put on a solo show would be costly and incredibly daunting. Plus it offers more of an experience for the audience and offers more cross-promotional opportunities.
I'm fortunate being in a city which is teeming with talent but I'm sure once you start really looking you'll find more people than you'd expected. Good luck :)