Fashion Week Packing

Never has the trope “Tough job, but someone’s gotta do it” seemed as oddly apt as it does right now. On one hand, I’m counting the days until New York Fashion Week kicks off—two weeks to go!—while on the other, I’m frozen just thinking about it all. And then I think of Crystal.

We’re lucky enough to count street-style photographer Crystal Nicodemus among our contributors; each Fashion Week she’s out there documenting the trends, the scene and the best-dressed players. And when we say “out there,” we mean out there. You can’t report on emerging street trends from inside a cozy coffee shop. Let’s let her tell it like it is—and like it’s going to be, as the next round of runways and real ways approaches…

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Our Director of Creative Projects is maybe one of the most colorful people we know—like, an animated rainbow with pink puppies follows her everywhere she goes. It’s pretty magical. But New York in midwinter is a cruel place. Pastel puppies or not. And really, when travel is concerned, less is very often more.

Even when that travel takes you to Fashion Week.

So let this glimpse into O.K.’s luggage be a lesson to all of us: It’s chic to streamline. And to wear sensible shoes in subhuman temperatures. These shoes and coats are our Pop-In Shop curator’s all-black-everything staples for Fall Fashion Week, and they are also our way of saying to you, “Heads up! We’re going full-on with this thing.”

In the days and weeks to come, you’ll hear from more Nordstrom insiders about their packing strategies, and we’ll get geared up in other ways, too—like, with actual gear. Because, yeah, how does our social media team capture those killer backstage beauty moments? (And everything else?)

So bundle up, friends—Olivia Kim does—and stay tuned.

Shop: More items OK’d by O.K. at Nordstrom.com/oliviakim

—Laura Cassidy

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Our designer apparel buyer, Sahar Sokhandan, shares her must-pack items and favorite hotspots during NYFW–with more to come for London, Milan and Paris Fashion Weeks.

Step into the shoes of a designer buyer–from checking in to grabbing an evening cocktail–and see all the recommendations for her NYC itinerary in Sahar’s New York Fashion Week Essentials.

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HERO

We took a peek inside the Redmond, WA, condo of our designer apparel buyer Sahar Sokhandan to kick off an ongoing series detailing her travel essentials for New York, London, Paris and Milan Fashion Weeks.

Born and raised in Norman, OK, and of Persian descent, Sahar moved to Seattle during high school and graduated pre-law from the University of Washington. After some soul-searching, she realized that she couldn’t picture herself as a lawyer, so she decided to merge her analytical side with her love for fashion by studying merchandising and marketing at Parsons The New School for Design in New York City. That led to internships at Chanel, Christian Louboutin and Bergdorf Goodman, where she ended up spending five years as an assistant buyer. Sahar’s now back in Seattle, working as one of our designer apparel buyers—an action-packed role that sends her on regular trips to Europe and New York.

“My husband and I live in a condo on Lake Sammamish, just east of Seattle. We’re right on the water—it’s very calm and peaceful.”

“We love having our boat docked just outside our back door. The local crew team rows here in the morning. It’s fun to pour coffee, sit outside and watch them.”

“If I had a uniform, this would be it. A great pair of heels, slim jeans and an oversized, masculine-inspired shirt.”

“I always start my outfits with the shoes. I love statement colors and textures, whether it’s python, calf hair, studs or any hardware details.”

“These Alexander McQueen slingbacks are the oldest shoes I own. They’re from 2006, when McQueen was still alive. I’ve repaired them quite a few times because I love them so much.”

“This Chanel dress is amazing. It has the most beautiful, hand-shaped Lemarié feather peplum along the waist, making it truly couture.”

“I collect fashion books. All of these were either gifts to me or else I was a friend of the designer. The Lanvin, Ralph Rucci, Manolo Blahnik, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen and Narciso Rodriguez books are all signed.”

“I got this silver beaded skull at Z Gallerie, this quirky little store near us that sells modern art and furniture.”

“I always try to wear one big ring on my right hand. Many of these were gifts.”

“I collect Hermès collier de chien bracelets, which translates to ‘dog collar’ in French. They’re incredibly hard to find, so when I see one, I have to buy it.”

Dior is everything. These boots are just amazing. I love all the buckles and hardware. I’m drawn to anything that’s feminine but edgy.”

“I’ve had these Balenciaga shoes for a few years. They’re really rock ‘n’ roll and look great with something more feminine up top.”

“This is an amazing flocked velvet jacquard Gucci blazer. I love the structured shoulders and enameled buttons on the sleeves. It’s a longer jacket, hitting below my hips, which is hard to find.”

“I moved home to Seattle from New York two months before my husband and I got married. We did five years long-distance. Our wedding felt a little New York and a little Seattle: we got married on the water in Denny Blaine Park, and the reception was at Pravda Studios, a huge loft on Capitol Hill.”

“A good friend of mine got married in Anguilla with a black-tie dress code. I’d had this Michael Kors dress forever and was dying for the right occasion to wear it. That seemed like the perfect one.”

“I got this Bottega Veneta python clutch as a gift. I like that it’s navy instead of black—it adds a bit of depth to it.”

“This Lanvin tassel necklace is a great statement piece. I wear it with a blouse, but it would also be fun to turn it around and let it drape down an open-back dress.”

“This is totally a ‘me’ look—Alexander Wang’s ‘Rocco’ duffle bag with Lanvin pumps. My bags are all pretty neutral because I wear so many colorful shoes.”

– “Tom Ford’s Tobacco Vanille Eau de Parfum is my everyday fragrance.”
– “NARS eye shadow has really rich pigments. They’re great in quality but also affordable.”
– “I layer my mascaras because I’ve never found one that does everything. Diorshow thickens my lashes, and Armani ‘Eyes to Kill’ lengthens and separates.”
– “I put NARS eye cream on first in the morning. It makes my under-eye concealer smoother and not so cakey.”
– “M·A·C highlighter helps to accentuate my brow bone.”
– “I use Chanel eye shadow as my liner when I’m doing a smoky eye.”
– “Dior lip gloss has this amazing pigment that pulls out the color of your own lip—it changes based on the person.”
– “I also like Dior lip maximizer—it actually plumps up your lips.”
– “I love this neutral Chanel lipstick. It has a sheen to it, so it feels like a lip gloss.”

Now that you’ve gotten a glimpse inside Sahar’s home, take a look at what she’s packing for New York Fashion Week, which starts next Thursday.

—Mary O’Regan

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