Last night, the St Andrews Charity Fashion Show began with a bang across Lower College Lawn. As I attempt to piece together the cloudy memories of the night to critically review what is arguably the biggest night in the St Andrews social calendar, the thought of alcohol still makes my stomach cringe.
The initial entrance into FS is possibly my favorite part of the night – the atmosphere is buzzing with anticipation, everyone’s makeup is still intact and conversation is still coherent. There were a few noticeable changes to the setup, such as the smaller tables, which made for much easier socializing (they’re symbolic anyway), and the longer catwalk, which made the crowds around the edges more dispersed, offering better views. A few confused attendees expecting dinner at the event were even more hard-hit by the Chambord and champagne on their empty stomachs.
The show was as entertaining an affair as always, starting off with a dramatic beginning in which the models circled in hooded attire. I must say that I missed the “haute couture”-esque taxidermy line from last year, but at the end of the day, FS is so much more than just a fashion show. There was a bit of a disparity between the number of of topless men (maybe even too many), and scantily clad women, but considering the male models were exceptionally beautiful this year, this cannot be seen as a problem in any female’s eyes.
The stairway to heaven was a great use of space, although may have disoriented its attendees even more than marquees already do when one is inebriated. It particularly allowed for a very dynamic, and even empowering, setup.
Finally, the show ended with a sprinkling of silver confetti, adding a beautiful theatrical effect. The auction took place directly after the show, which, as usual, provided enormous amounts of entertainment. Bids sky-rocketed and included such things as a St Andrews Oktoberfest table, which was sold for well over 2,000 GBP.
Several informal, yet crucial, “mid-games” were hosted around town before everyone returned for the after party. This was most likely a turning point for the worse in many people’s nights as they stocked up on cheaper alcohol before returning to the event.
The after party was messy, but successful, particularly compared to the complaints staged last year about the use of spaces and DJ placement, as well as the number of people who were expelled for inappropriate behavior (some pseudo-statistics even suggest that ¼ of attendees were kicked out). People seemed to be schweffing everywhere we turned. Word on the street is that there was a photo booth at the event, although I personally did not encounter it in my night. It also offered another example of the interesting use of space as it was the backstage of the catwalk.
All in all, the night was a huge success, leaving us all looking forward to next year’s event, despite the lingering effects of hangover-induced social anxiety.
The event raised at least £25,000 for the 600th Anniversary campaign.
Main image by St Andrews Charity Fashion Show 2013. Photos courtesy of FS 2013. Compiled by Katie Marston.