Looking back at the images and reminiscing of the experience’s I had as an independent designer embarking on the global scene of fashion  was a surreal and proud moment for me.After a decade in the industry working in retail , styling and modelling, I had only dreamed of doing runway shows of my own and after a short time in the industry as a label I kept receiving invitations from fashion events around the World!

PARIS, DUBAI, SINGAPORE, INDIA, from Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia and NEW YORK it was such an honour and rewarding to be acknowledged from afar. Receiving such attention from a global perspective was a credit to my brand and reputation and very unexpected I worked so hard I never looked up to believe I was deserving of such exposure or praise I was truely humbled by it and scared a little , it was also new to me, me always trying to impress and perfect my art was never enough. I always push my self harder.

All fashion shows come with a huge fee and a budget to work with, from garments  , production, models, and an entourage, not to mention promos and travel. It isn’t cheap for a company or designer to pull off such an event. Yes fashion shows are a massive promotional add campaign for designers but it isn’t free and it isn’t easy a lot of hard work and dedication comes into play and a supportive team helps.

I decided to participate in  FASHION WEEK  in Canada, How I decided to make this decision was by checking the  Analytic stats, through my website and social media my team and i were able to gather information on followers and where they live, location and  according to clicks on LENA KASPARIAN website. By looking at the traffic via geography on  website and google search Canada came in 3rd behind USA but I’ve been to USA so many times so it was a good excuse  to discover another nation so Vancouver  was the  proactive and most suited city for my first international runway show.

So we were booked in  for a show in September 2018 and I had to get started with my new collection for the show. Dreaming and visualising looks I just kept sketching them till I narrowed down 200 sketched to 50 looks and decided to fly to the factory and go through each sketch  and  select fabrics and colours  then finalised 30 looks. I put the sample pieces into productions and prepared to have an in-house  rehearsal  with models and make up artists and a photographer a month later. I needed to see my vision come to life as I am a perfectionist. I wanted to see the design through the lens as they will be captured by 100’s of photographers / paparazzi on the night and it was crucial to get it right.

I had a meeting with my hair and make up and we came up with  a look for the models to wear lace masks over the face and a sleek hair style so the main focus will be on the actual garments. I wanted the look to be sophisticated and simple yet mischievous and sassy.

When my team arrived in Vancouver we had one night before the show so we attended the program to get acquainted and meet and greet organisers and guests. I sat front row with my agent and my make up artist went back stage to meet the team. A fitting and rehearsal was scehduled the following morning day of the show. I had pre selected my models months in advance going through comp cards, Most models were volunteers trying to gain experience and gain exposure which i love shows how much passion they have for the role.

It was raining and when I say raining it was pouring and the venue which was a tent was flooding water everywhere! We had the volunteers helping us carry each garment as we laid towels on the floor to un pack garments. I asked for all my models to line up so I can start fitting them, Apparently word got out that this designer form Australia was showing casing and all the models wanted to walk for me so I had more than i bargained for. It came down to which dresses fit like a glove on who and was it a match made in heaven, after 2 hrs of finalising my runway set we had to refuse some models and there were tears. I felt so bad for them i went and spoke to the upset models one by one and gave them a hug and thanked them for understanding.

While we did the rehearsel run, one models body suit zipper ripped open and i couldn’t find the time to repair it, She was devastated so i decided to not break her heart and said “ Don’t worry you will walk the show” Once hair and make up was done they came to my quarter where we had all garments floating off the ground as it was wet. Model stood close by with her eyes closed praying, i called her over and told her to put on the jumpsuit I grabbed my emergency kit and took out a needle and thread, 2 people holding the back zipper together and another holding up a phone torch light and i started sticking the model in the the garment.

She stood there like a statue so it doesn't rip open for an hr and kept thanking me for making sure she get s to participate in my show, it was so humbling.

It was chaos back stage people everywhere designers and garments on top of each other, my agent came and grabbed me and pulled me out to meet and greet guests and take pictures before the show.

Then it was time, I heard the MC announce my Label and my music that i worked on with my sound guy dj and friend echo in the hall, i looked back at my models standing in queue, i smiled and thought to my self wow I did it.

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