Monday, July 2, 2012

Who's Next: Violent & Funky

Who's Next is a semi-annual show presenting trend forecast collections and up and coming designers. Lasting 4 days, the event is huge and covers 6 halls with women's and men's wear, urban wear, leather, shoes and accessories.

All the stands of clothing brands are displayed in the halls. In order to liven up the atmosphere, some Dj stands are scattered here and there and you can have a drink, a snack or even a full meal if you are ready to pay the price.
The halls are all carpeted in white, in order to "hide the hideous damaged floor". Indeed we quickly realized that underneath, there were various traps to avoid: cracks, holes and sewer drains for the most common ones... And like any white public floor, it didn't survive the first day and turned into a black-spotted carpet.

In order to entertain all the potential clients and the onlookers, lots of activities are organized. The outdoor central path leading to the various buildings is decorated with bales of straw -- and straw everywhere on the ground. Both sides are full of varied stands: refreshment areas with alcoholic and soft fashionable drinks, a burger van, a quad skate rental stand, a second-hand clothing hippie shop, horses (?!), a stage with mostly country music bands following one another (hence the straw and the horses?) ... Okay, I'm being unkind with the music program: Daft Punk came on Saturday night.

As you can see, the best activity *ever* is a free photobooth hidden in the corner of a walkway...
Apart from the independant small activities of the day, big events are organized every evening with open bar and special themes.
On the first evening, there was a roller-disco, preceded by a roller-derby and rollerdance exhibitions and on the second evening, the final of the football Euro Cup was projected on a big screen.

SkateXpress, my rollerdance crew, was booked for the weekend with the mission to skate around with our microcube playing funky music out loud and dressed up in a 70's fashion. High-waisted flared trousers and short pants are in the place! There were three of us, Jim, Soraya and myself, strolling around in the halls, stopping at the Djs, dancing to their sounds etc. It would have been perfect if we hadn't had to spend 10 hrs in the weekend skating on a carpeted minefield. It is tiring and quite violent for a resumption. Hadn't put my skates on for 4 weeks!
However it enabled me to confirm my theory that the periostitis I had developped during rehab were due to me not being used to do sport with knickers: All the pain has gone now that I'm back on wheels... Hahahaha.

The mission was not entertaining just because we were paid to show off and skate. It was also entertaining to observe the world of fashion which I am so proud not to be part of. Too much stress and hierarchy and too many people with misplaced pride. "Could you please not stand in the way? There are people working here." Sure ma'am... We're sorry ma'am... We'll go and play somewhere else (!!!)
[edit: We were slightly less disciplined and our answer was more like "Because you think we're not working, you fat cow?!" except for the end, which (hopefuly) didn't cross our lips]
Oh and there is definitely too much alcohol. Even our coordinator welcomed us with a champagne flute in her hand. She was already tipsy enough not to walk straight. It was 2pm...

The show was also the occasion to meet potential sponsors. We were kind of noticeable and it worked in our favor. We were spotted by Fydelity Stereobags who seems very interested in working with us. Time will tell. But we came back with a couple of samples: I got a glitter black bum bag and a vintage red shoulded bag. Yeah!

I was there as a SkateXpress rollerdancer, but the Paris RollerGirls were around too and made the most of the show to make contacts!

Almost completed my comeback
and it goes like that!

You want funky? We got funky...
What kind of funky?

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