As the first fashion show of the season, the St Andrews Charity Fashion Show (FS) had much to live up to. Last year’s show was jaw-dropping, and many thought it could not be topped, especially with the lack of build-up leading up to the show. However, it’s fair to say that FS did not disappoint.
The evening started off with a less than brilliant start with an unprecedented queue to enter the venue. Due to the infinitely continuous works done on St Salvators Quad, everyone was bottlenecked at an infinitesimally slow pace. People were even becoming crushed as excitement became too much to handle. This wasn’t helped by the huge amount of bass being heard from outside the Old Union Café – the music did nothing to quench everyone’s growing thirst for the show. We wittered the time away whilst speculating about what the night would bring. The queue took a good twenty minute chunk out of the night.
Inside, the venue was an incredibly creative space that utilised the entire body of the tent. The catwalk’s branches fed off into the crowd, meaning that everyone in the crowd got more or less the same view. The tables came with two bottles of Lanson champagne, Propercorn popcorn as well as a treasure chest of cocktail. It was mojito in our case, which did not last long whatsoever, and never will for a table of 10. Whilst everyone was mingling and chatting it was obvious to me that the tension was palpable for the show to finally start, and it did, half an hour after the intended time due to the queue.
When the show did begin, it was so utterly worth the wait. The combination of beautiful models, stunning clothing and brain-melting music came together to create a feast for the senses that never ended. The music, a mixture of popular clubbing anthems and old school classics, provided a deep bass line that kept everyone dancing alongside the catwalk. This trend was broken with the appearance of the same saxophonist who preformed last year, who teased and interacted with the crowd amongst the models.
As the first half came to a close, a rather abrupt one with no warning, the music continued but with no models emerging from backstage, leaving everyone wanting more. The auction came to pass, generating a huge sum of money for the nominated charity “It’s Good 2 Give,” which raises money for local young people with cancer and their families. It’s fair to say that, those single 20 minutes of auctioning off various prizes, formed one of the more cliché moments for St Andreans, with students forking out large sums of money without second thoughts, whilst simultaneously drinking champagne from the bottle. Altogether, £6,285 was raised during the auction, with prizes ranging from a The Other Guys private show (£400), a date with a male FS model of your choice (£210) to the ultimate prize of the evening, an Oktoberfest table, going for a whopping £1,600 to the gasps of people in the audience.
The second half of the show was calmer by a small margin, with less people cramming for their place at the side of the catwalk. As the evening drew on, those not particularly interested in fashion were more content with standing amongst the tables and dancing around to the music. Still, the music beat on, the models were strutting their stuff and creating a magical night.
Whilst the main fashion show was out of this world, the after party ‘Insomnia’ was something that could have been missed. The sprawling catwalk made for an awkward venue with half of the tent unused and forming a bottle neck next to the main bar, making that area a haven for getting pushed and shoved about. Unfortunately, too, by this point in the night the majority of fashion show goers were far gone, making for some lewd behaviour during the latter part of the evening. The catwalk formed the perfect stage, literally, for Valentine’s Day couples to further celebrate their love and, for the less romantic encounters in the evening, getting tossed around in the crowds by the bottle neck. I was knocked in the face by a hand, so if you’ve seen me wandering around with a black eye this week, know that I’ve sustained a sartorial injury.
In between the horrendous queue and the anti-climactic after party, the show itself was a blend of pure art and passion, show casing the work the committee have produced these last few months. One attendee summarised their evening with the statement “it was an amazing show, but not worth a sponsored after party.” It cannot be denied that FS did pull out all the stops this year, and came back on top, where they belong.