San Francisco fashionistas party down at Fashion's Night Out

Fashion bloggers Whitney Powell (left) and Brittany Hebb (right) share their styling secrets during the Fashion's Night Out event at Bloomingdale's Thursday Sept. 6, 2012. Photo by Bryan Vo.

With great timing to kick off New York’s Fashion Week, consumers were able to join editors, models, stars and celebrities in the most fashionable party yet.

Fashion’s Night Out is a one-night event that was created in 2009 by Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of Vogue magazine. The New York-born shindig is an annual revitalization of the industry. In its fourth year, it has spread through about 18 countries and 500 cities.

Last year marked San Francisco’s first Fashion’s Night Out, and the massive event devoured the downtown shopping center with fanatic fashionistas.

“Since this event in New York gets crazy to the point where they need a numerous amount of security because of the so many shoppers, San Francisco will definitely get there eventually,” said Whitney Powell, San Francisco fashion blogger of Britt+Whit. “It’s gaining more speed each year because more people know about it.”

She said this iconic extravaganza is trying to promote the new fall fashion trends while helping the fashion business that are really hurting during an economic downturn.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in the apparel manufacturing industry has declined by more than 80 percent, from about 900,000 to 150,000 jobs, over the past two decades.

“What Fashion’s Night Out is really trying to do is trying to get people back in the stores and money back in the economy,” said Powell.

Nancy Lueck, regional director of public relations for Bloomingdale’s, said the event praises the creativity of the industry by promoting consumerism.

“This is a moment for all retailers to come together to celebrate the importance of this industry and bring to our consumers a unique experience,” says Lueck. “It’s tough and we put a lot of effort for our campaign here for fall and for Fashion’s Night Out.”

As the party goes on in shops, Bloomingdale’s keeps their audience interested with fashion bloggers, photographers and food.

Lueck noted a new system for customers to do quicker shopping, Swivel. The Microsoft Xbox Kinect software allows a customer to try on clothes in a virtual fitting room.

“This is new for us and we wanted to premiere this playful system for tonight,” says Lueck.

Since people are set in their ways when going into specific stores and grabbing what they need, Fashion’s Night Out gives customers an experience where they can mingle and try out different stores to see the new fashion trend, says Powell.

To draw in new audiences, different departments are promoting new designs, fragrances, designers and Fashion Week.

Fashion blogger Brittany Hebb says, “This event makes fashion more accessible and approachable to consumers.”

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