FNO Gets Grounded: The Shopping Event Turned Headache Cancelled for 2013
After four years and one wrecked Audi, Fashion’s Night Out has been put on hiatus.
When Fashion’s Night Out (FNO) was conceived in 2009, fashion lovers and their friends paraded through the streets in official event tees and posted cheesy Facebook shots the next morning. The brainchild of Anna Wintour, this annual night of store hopping quickly expanded to include hundreds of hubs across the nation and select international cities.
Yet despite its popularity (or perhaps because of it), the powers that be have cancelled all 2013 celebrations for those of us residing in the United States. Though I’ll miss the late hours and Magnolia’s themed cupcakes, last year’s FNO-induced headache leaves me rather unsurprised by the news.
In 2011, I pushed through throngs of tourists and freebie-loving NYC locals to interview model Chanel Iman during a FNO event. Sure, the crowds were bustling and the lines for any store with alcohol wrapped across entire avenues, but it was an entertaining experience. My photographer friend even received a handful of compliments from stylish strangers for her over-the-top booties –we didn’t even get trampled by a stampede!
Fast forward just one year and this seemingly innocuous shopping event has turned into an uncontrollable monster. An alcohol-guzzling, goody bag-hunting, garbage-tossing beast that’d make almost anyone want to steer clear of Fifth Avenue for days. And it didn’t even shell out for designer duds!
According to a delicately-worded official event statement, this year’s 2013 lull will “enable retailers to channel their resources towards strategies more in keeping with their current priorities.” As in, boozing without buying isn’t going to fly. And neither is rioting in SoHo nor shattering a car windshield and then jumping onto the vehicle. Yes, that really happened.
“Last year’s Fashion’s Night Out in SoHo was blighted by violence and shockingly inappropriate behavior,” City Councilwoman Margaret Chin said in a statement via DNAinfo. “It is my hope that the organizers take use of this hiatus as an opportunity to reform Fashion’s Night Out and make it more responsive to the needs of the SoHo community.”
This all goes to show that in the fashion world, catering to the tipsy masses isn’t always a recipe for success. Until event-goers can behave themselves, we can kiss the photo booths, cocktails, and dancing goodbye. In the meantime, Europeans will party on in 2013 without us.
Diana Denza is BettyConfidential’s contributing editor.