The Science Behind Seating Arrangements at Fashion Shows in Maricopa County

The runway may be perfectly choreographed, but the seating arrangement of the guests is just as well thought out, if not more so. La Vie d'Ours Chique is produced by students enrolled in the promotion of Phoenix College fashion shows and is supported by student members of the Phoenix College Fashion Club. If the first three rows are where the most influential people sit, it is clear that the elite of the fashion world are in the front row, and only in the front row. Celebrities often congregate in the center of the runway, where photographers can capture them all in one shot, also known as the money photo.

The real highlight of Fashion Week is to see what they are wearing or to witness them tear up as an especially powerful collection passes by (in the back, the runway lights don't reach you, causing tears to flow anonymously). Fashion “it girls”, members of high society and friends of the brand are also in the front row category. With an average of 125 front-row seats at a typical fashion show, many designers are judged just as harshly by who sits in those seats as by the clothes that come off the runway. It is obvious that sitting in the front row is important for fashion show attendees, but it's also extremely important for designers.

The challenge for advertisers who decide who will actually sit in the front row is that almost everyone attending Fashion Week believes they deserve one of the best seats. Fashion publicist Kelly Cutrone became famous for saying that if you're not sitting in the first three rows of a fashion show during Fashion Week, you'd better stay home. Criticized as harshly for her attire as for who sits in these precious seats, the fashion world's crème de la crème sits in the front row and only in the front row. As a special feature, this year's show will include Prismatic, fashion and color, designed by students in collaboration with local companies. Erin Hawker, a public relations veteran and founder of Agentry PR (which is responsible for seating arrangements for this season's main series, including Christian Siriano) says that sitting in the front row for a show is basically “a science”.

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