In my role as a Private PA I am privileged to attend some of the most amazing events that London has to offer. In this post I want to recount one in particular, that being the opening Gala dinner at the V&A museum for the Alexander McQueen exhibition last year. This was a much sought after ticket and highly anticipated date on the calendar of many a socialite and fashionista! I hasten to add I am neither of these but was lucky enough to be given a ‘golden seat’ at a table of other guests all known to me through my job.
Let me paint the scene for you. As I got out of the black cab in front of the main entrance to the V&A Museum on the Cromwell Road in South Kensington on a crisp March evening, the red carpet lined the stairs leading to the main doors of this grandiose building with Paps packed tightly behind their cordon furiously clicking away ….. that is until I began to ascend the stairwell, they took one glance at me and the cameras were momentarily rested …….. when this happens and believe me it does on quite a few occasions, it always makes me chuckle.
Once inside it was clear to me that the bulk of the guests consisted of the great and the good alongside the beautiful of the creative world. I was soon spotting the likes of Kate Moss, Erin O’Connor and Naomi Campbell to name but a few. INADEQUATE did I feel? I just kept repeating to myself a quote I had recently come across from Oprah Winfrey “I know where my lane is, and I know how to stay in my lane.”
I was super excited to glean what everyone was wearing, it was a true feast of the finest of haute couture with quite a few iconic McQueen gowns adorning some of the world’s most glamorous women such as Salma Hayek, who sported the tiniest of waists in hers! It was whilst I stood nearby to her that one of the museum staff in attendance recognised me, instantly greeted me warmly and at the top of her voice waxed lyrical about the outfit I was sporting for the occasion, asking me about its origin. I smiled politely and took such immense pleasure in retorting for all around to hear “It’s from Monsoon, purchased 2 years ago ………… my trick is to buy high street and keep it in the closet for a couple of seasons before wearing it. This is then my version of vintage”. Well, to my eye the dress in question is quite Jenny Packham’esque, although as with any art form, this is very much subjective and no doubt some will disagree with my take on this piece, perhaps most of all Jenny Packham herself!