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It's Not The ROI! It's The FOI?

It's Not The ROI! It's The FOI?

While much of our coverage privileges runway during show season, we are not entirely inured to the allure of the fashion party, thus with the help of eLuxury, we decided to treat our readers on a behind the scenes look at the fundamentals of throwing a fashion week bash.

eLuxury, under the new leadership of David Asher, threw its hat into the Fashion Week fray this season with a party at 60 Thompson on the evening of September 11th. Taking over the rooftop of the hotel (hauntingly lit by the glow of the lights emanating from Ground Zero) as well the a VIP section of Thom Bar, the party was an opportunity for the New York fashion community to meet the new CEO and become more familiar with the San Francisco based, LVMH owned, luxury ecommerce retailer.

And meet and greet we did, as your editors bumped into the new CEO right off the bat in the elevator, where the bare-chested Galliano-esque creative gamely discussed his activities for the evening. Clearly it was to be a rockstar agenda with fun as the main activity, though closely followed it would seem by inebriation. In fact, when we asked David on our way out, only jokingly, about the ROI of the gift bags, he told us "You are too mathematical. It's not about the ROI! It's about the FOI. Fun on investment."

That sentiment, while perhaps not deeply reassuring to shareholders given our extremely precarious financial times, is certainly part and parcel of the fashion party experience. To mix a few telling historical references, in an age and industry of Babylonian excess, why not fiddle while Rome burns? Here Sarah Logan, Director of Merchandising for eLuxury, fields our questions on just what makes a fashion party tick and how to make it fun.

Coutorture: What is the purpose of throwing a party at fashion week?

Sarah Logan:To bring people together to discuss ideas, inspirations, and experiences. Fashion week is the ideal time to capture that energy.

C: How do you judge if an event was a success?

S: If there are a lot of laughs, smiles, and animated conversation.  The more of all of the three things mentioned; the better the party.

C: How do you craft a guest list. Who do you hope to attract? Whom do you hope to avoid?
S: You hope that every guest will come away with a new friend, a new notion, or a new intention.  It is always best to avoid the dramatic.

What goes into planning the event?

S: Commitment, belief, and purpose.  Most importantly, providing guests with a few hours of pure revelry.

C: What are some of the critical decisions?
S: Location is key.  Guests need to feel welcome and comfortable enough to linger and mingle.  Dom Perignon always helps.

C: How do you choose a menu?

S: Cocktail menus need to be party attire friendly, and need to consider a range of eating habits.  It is always best to plan for more food and drink than you think is needed.

C: What about drink sponsors?

S: We have the luxury of being affiliated with LVMH, so our offering included Dom Perignon, Chopin, and Ruinart Rose Champagne.  And since we are based in San Francisco, we felt it appropriate to fly in a resident Bar Chef to mix an exclusive cocktail- the "eLUXIR."

C: Why is eLuxury throwing their hat into the fashion week party fray?
S: Since we are based in San Francisco, we thought fashion week in New York would be the perfect venue for welcoming our friends on the opposite coast.

C: Is this a new marketing direction for eLuxury?

S: We always strive to offer our customers and audience with the best possible experience, so our marketing strategy remains true to that initial philosophy.  Increasing presence and exposure is a key factor in that vision.

C: How does a party translate into sales? Or does it?
S: Hopefully a guest will leave feeling pampered and exhilarated.  A happy shopper is a loyal shopper.

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