Broke Ass Guide to NYC Fashion Week

Spend NYC’s Fashion Week pretending like you can afford designer threads while hoarding free food, booze, and fashion inspiration.

Backpacker's Guide to NYC Fashion Week

Popped bottles of bubbly, the hottest clothing trends and treetop-tall models galore make up the glitz and glam of Fashion Week in New York City. Sound a little too upscale for your down to earth travels? Think again, friends. World-class vagabonds are V.I.P. wherever they may be. Acquaint yourself with the ins and outs of the fashion red carpet and you’ll be chowing down on this drunk ginger in no time.

The Skinny

The Skinny

1943’s New York City popped the cherry of week-long festivals in the name of fashion as an attempt to detract attention from French clothing competitors. “Press Week” (as it was first called) offered industry insiders valuable insight without having to cut the costly ticket to France. The extravagance of the event was met with huge success as American fashion became respectfully recognized on the map and all throughout previously French-dominated fashion magazines. Today, New York City’s bi-annual event (September and February) showcases the chic via product presentations, runway shows, scattered press parties, and all-out public celebrations of sexiness in a revelry that floods the streets!

Get In Or Head Out

Get In Or Head Out

“Dress to impress” may well be an understatement for invited guests. As a seasoned traveler, you probably wear the same lived-in clothes (and the stains they’ve earned over the years) with pride. No need to unravel your dreads or splurge on new threads just yet–unless you’re in the industry, scoring an invite is next to impossible so we’re already looking at other options. The main action goes down at the Lincoln Center in Manhattan’s Upper West Side. If you really want in, apply for a volunteer position beforehand. You’ll be doing bitch work like seating guests and making goody bags, but you’ll be in the thick of things. Chillin’ with the beautiful people and scoring free sponsored snacks and drinks all week doesn’t sound so bad.

Cocktails, Cuisine, and Couture

Cocktails, Cuisine, and Couture

If you’re like the rest of us, starfucking and floundering for free shit, your best bet is to head down to SoHo. Sure, the events are uptown but unless you’ve got a body like Beckham and can whip out a black American Express, you’re not getting in. SoHo’s got enough flavor to cover your fashion fix anyway. Keep an eye out for off-duty models and big shots of the biz while you’re down here. Streets are smaller and boutiques are abundant, making the mayhem even more fun to navigate. Maps are available and seasonal routes are suggested, as over a thousand stores participate during fashionistas’ holy week. And the chicks dress slutty. Sold?

Fashion Goes on a Bender

Fashion Goes on a Bender

Fashion’s Night Out is easily the best night of the week. Stars are out doing signings and meet-and-greets; alcohols of marvelous sorts are poured generously; various foods will be brought to you, and plentifully–all for free at various stores around Manhattan (and Brooklyn). Sip Patron, scarf down burgers, and hang with Harry Potter to lube up for some discounted shopping. When you’re ready to head out in the name of fashion, check your swag and hit up the huge sales. Places in your budget (like H & M) participate and will knock down their already affordable merchandize and more expensive places will have at least one thing (keychain?) that you can afford during Fashion’s Night Out.

Don’t let the high class buzz of fashion week scare your broke ass away. Whether you’re willing to work or just looking to stroll and score some freebies, fashion week (February 7-14, 2013) up in N.Y.C. is a deservingly haute place to be.