A Weekend Dispatch from New York Fashion Week’s Party Scene

NYFW never disappoints.

Fashion Week is here. Hippolyte Petit/BFA.com

It’s hot.

Labor Day has come and gone, but New York City is unseasonably warm right now, and unfortunately, this really isn’t an opportune time to be sweating profusely as one saunters outside. It is, after all, NYFW.

But then again, as Fashion Week events take over New York City, one comes to a dramatic and quizzical crossroads, which could be the question of climate change generations to come: pare down one’s outfit to accommodate the extreme heat, or dress to impress, perspiration-related consequences be damned? I’m not exactly sure what the Paris Climate Accords would say about this. 

At times, temperatures soared over 90 degrees Fahrenheit, and with so many fashionable parties on the agenda, I’ll just say it: my fear is to simply not look good. That said, this is NYFW, so let’s get on with it.

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Diddy at “The Love Album” Listening Party. Getty Images

Thursday night 

Fashion Week events in the Big Apple are such a unique combination of brands and random locations that listing them almost seems like a game of MadLibs. To start, Ralph Lauren had a party at Brooklyn Navy Yard, Coach threw a bash at the New York Public Library, and Boohoo hosted a dinner at Bad Roman, to name just a few. And on Thursday night, Diddy hosted a party in the Lower East Side. 

One never turns down an opportunity to attend a party hosted by Diddy—it’s like going to Mass and receiving communion from the Pope himself. I baptize myself with cologne and count my blessings. 

As the clock rolls past midnight, there’s a party atmosphere outside on the street even before you walk into Loosie’s, located underneath the Moxy LES. Nearby a car is blasting music from its speakers as revelers smoke cigarettes and joints. A large crowd is waiting outside.

Down the stairs and inside the cellar, the space is jam-packed; the ceiling is covered in disco balls and there’s a red light sweeping over the crowd. There’s also, perhaps surprisingly, a cash bar. The party is hosted by the popular promoter Sean Dickerson, the creative director of the MADE Group (Drake and 21 Savage’s “Spin Bout U” namedrops his bash). Halle Bailey is here, as is Tiffany Haddish. As promised, Diddy does show up, and plays tracks from his upcoming The Love Album: Off the Grid. One lyric the album doesn’t showcase: “Pull up to the club and hit a cash bar.”

The Helmut Lang afterparty at Boom Boom Room. Jason Sean Weiss/BFA.com

Friday night 

The heat at the 8th Avenue subway station is on a level somewhere between an out-of-control sauna and the tenth circle of Hell. Ascending the stairs and walking towards the Standard Meatpacking for Helmut Lang’s after party comparatively feels like stepping into the arctic tundra. Sweet, cool air, coming to the rescue. The Standard, and specifically the Boom Boom Room, has been the epicenter of Fashion Week events for years, with Vogue hosting their official party here in February. Meanwhile, Daniel Arsham took over the space on Wednesday, September 6. 

Inside , there’s an eclectic crowd: Helmut Lang-ers celebrating Peter Do’s debut, fellow fashionistas, nightlife creatures and even a K-Pop star: Tiffany Young of Girls Generation (Instagram follower count: 16,000,000, just a couple more than I). And yes, it’s an open bar. 

Upon entry, I managed to get a seat on a couch. To my left, I strike up a conversation with a party reveler’s mother, who is here out of pure curiosity. She’s in town from Colorado, and we can barely hear each other as we talk; this is either the best or worst night of her life. 

As the evening progresses, I order a dirty martini, which splashes onto me as I walk around the crowded space. As I make my way to the terrace to get some air, the slippery glass slides out of my hand and crashes down. After the fall, I hear someone next to me say, “I’m gonna call it a night.” I guess I’m an anti-influencer: Some people get the party going; I, on the other hand, seem to inspire the opposite effect. Thankfully, the mom didn’t see my faux pas, or else I would have gotten a stern talking-to. 

Ice Spice. Hippolyte Petit/BFA.com

Saturday night 

The next night, I’m back at the Standard Meatpacking to ride the elevator upstairs to the scene of my glass-dropping crime, but for an entirely different experience. Tonight, it’s an afterparty hosted by Dion Lee, and Ice Spice is set to perform atop the bar. In her honor, the open bar naturally offers an Icy Spicy Margarita. 

It’s a tradition here at the Boom Boom Room for a lauded performer to take the stage-slash-bar, and Ice Spice was a guest at Dion Lee’s show earlier today. Other artists who’ve performed on the bar this year include Azealia Banks (who appeared on behalf of Dion Lee’s winter bash), and Doja Cat, for Don Julio tequila. The latter stayed in one corner and performed for 12 percent of the lucky audience. Very cat-like. 

Avril Lavigne. Hippolyte Petit/BFA.com

Tonight is another grab-bag of random attendees. They include the expected (Dion Lee himself), and the, well, not (Avril Lavigne). Even before the Sk8er Boi puns could come into play, I see a young male guest dressed like a skater. How was he dressed like a skater, you ask? Well aside from the general look, he was holding a physical skateboard. He has it figured out: fashion and transportation, all in one. 

By 1:30 AM, Ms. Spice begins and spits through a pair of her signature tracks (“Deli” and “Princess Diana”). With that, the first song gives inspiration as to where I’m going next.

A Weekend Dispatch from New York Fashion Week’s Party Scene