Colombiamoda is one of the largest fashion events in all of South America, closely following Sao Paolo in terms of investment opportunities. During my time in Colombia, I was lucky enough to work for Inexmoda- the company behind the organisation of this prestigious international event, as an International Press Manager. This meant sourcing, inviting and organising the logistics behind the 70 members of international press that attended the event. During the week itself, I was responsible for the English-speaking members of press- their well-being, organising interviews with designers, translating and interpreting as needed. It was a truly demanding but incredibly rewarding week that brought my internship to a fantastic close!
To kick off the week, we went to Plaza Mayor, where the event was being held, for a contextualisation of the entire trade show including spaces and events that would happen throughout the week. There was a tonne of information to take in that we desperately scribbled down and tried to memorize.
On the Sunday, we received the international press members at the San Fernando Plaza Hotel-a beautiful 5 star that surpassed a lot of people’s expectations! The job took all day, as people were arriving from 10am til midnight. This is me, looking profesh.
For Monday, we had organised a trip for the international press to see the other side of Medellin. We liased with the local government to allow us free passage up the cable car to Parque Arvi, a forrestal reserve at the top of the mountain where we had arranged for a really pretty brunch, marketplace and the opportunity to plant a tree and leave something in Medellin forever! Me and Simona planted “el arbol de amistad” (tree of friendship) which I hope to return to one day.
After that, we were ferried back to Plaza Mayor for another wander around the space. Everything was certainly ready now, with 4 pavilions, food court, brands and shops set up all around the site. It was HUGE! All ready for an early start tomorrow morning, not before the inaugural catwalk that night by Camilo Alvarez.
The show was amazing and the atmosphere was really cool. Every year, Argos (a cement brand… weird I know) sponsors the show and holds the opening catwalk in their distribution center on the outskirts of town. We met up with the international press and accompanied them to the show where we enjoyed cocktails whilst watching a pair of drummers making up the music as models walked in a circular catwalk around them.
It was a long night, which made the morning wake up even harder. But the rest of the week was truly worth getting up early for. I can’t express the pride I felt at being a part of the event. The past 5 months had worked up to this and all those hours phoning journalists who were incapable of picking up their ringing phones was truly made up for. I wish I had known how big it was going to be and how impressed I was before I approached journalists I really think we can get some even better ones in years to come.
Many of the international press members told me how they thought it was bigger and better than even New York Fashion Week as the exhibition spaces made it a truly global affair. The fashion shows themselves were fantastic- a really high standard. Especially considering that this year, there was a huge push for new Colombian talent. Some favourites were Andres Pajon (a truly gorgeous formal womenswear brand), Lia Samantha (African vs Colombian clashing prints and co-ords with fab headscarves) and Studio F (ready-to-wear Colombian resort wear).
I’m hoping that my presence at Inexmoda means that they’ll start to take the internationalization of the event more seriously- they had underestimated the amount of translation needed at an event like Colombiamoda and my international press struggled on more than one occasion to know what was going on. Between Simona and myself, we were desperately trying to keep up with on-the-spot interpretation and translation of press releases after every event. But the Director of Marketing was very sympathetic towards our cause and has promised to take it on board. For any international event, it is (sad to say) paramount, to have translations in English!
Having said that, it gave me an important job to do that allowed me to really contribute to the event and form some really great relationships with the international press members. Hoping to stay in touch with them in the future!
I’ve included some pics in this post, but for more, check out my photos on Instagram!