Your Guide to Fashion's Night Out NYC Sept 8, 2011: What to Wear, Where to Go & How to Decide

It's that time again! Fashion week is upon us here in NYC and everyone is super excited for the new trends to come, what everyone will be wearing and of course, FASHION'S NIGHT OUT. Now, I took part in Fashion's Night out last year for the first time and it was amazing. If you're in the NYC area, you definitely have to come out and join the fun. If you're not in the NYC area, don't worry, they may be some events by you as well. Check out the official site for FNO here.

For those of you who have never experienced FNO and are going, "What in the world is FNO?" Don't worry, we're gonna cover that. Fashion's Night out is a "global initiative" that begin in 2009 and a partnership between American Vogue, the Council of Fashion Designers of America, NYC & Company, and the city of New York. It's a night to celebrate fashion, boost our economy, restore the confidence in consumers and get the fun part of shopping back!

FNO normally starts at 6 pm and ends around 11 pm. Certain locations host events early and have little giveaways in the morning, but none are really advertised that way. If you have a favorite brand or store, I'd call them and ask them if they're having any earlier events. FNO also has a official collection of merchandise that launches every year. It includes bags, shirts and more. You can buy those products here.

For all your Gleeks out there: Glee made a music video for FNO

Here are the steps to having a successful FNO night:

1. Download the FREE FNO NY app for your Android or iPhone. This will be an essential tool in figuring out what event is near you, where you wanna be and help set up your game plan for the evening. Last year, I did all this research and ending up printing about five pages worth of events. It was a pain to carry and keep looking at.

2. Figure out what your goal is for FNO: Is it for killer sales?! Is it for the free food & drinks? Is it for all the celebrities? Once you figure out what is it you want to see then you can narrow it down further. The celebrity locations are usually the craziest places to be BUT can be the most fun.

3. Dress appropriate: If you wanna wear heels, be my guest. The weather is awful in NYC right now, so I suggest some fashionable rain boots. Bring a small bag if you can. You don't wanna be carrying a lot of stuff especially with the large crowds.

4. Transportation: Figure out how to get to all the stops you'd like to hit and how you're gonna get there. It's gonna be insanely hard to catch a cab. Buses, trains & walking are the best option.

5. Have fun & shop a little. You deserve it :)

Now this Fashion Night's Out, N.Y.C. is hosting hundreds of events (literally) so figuring out where and what you wanna do is a bit challenging. I've been getting tons of emails and having friends constantly ask, "Where should I go?" The answer is: It's up to YOU. It goes back up to step 2. Get a game plan together and figured out what you want so you're not overwhelmed.

Here's a list of some of the events creating some buzz:

What: Barbie's FNO Scavenger Hunt
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 to 8 pm
Where: Exclusive bus ride at the corner of 59th and 8th Avenue (it's free!)
Why: Barbie partnered with four designers for her scavenger hunt. Ride the free Gray Line double-decker buses and stop at participating stores: Alice + Olivia, Alexis Bittar, Tracy Reese, and Rogan. There is also a hunt going on: Find the Barbie-size version of the fashions each designer has created for Barbie. Enter the QR code and be entered to win the outfit for yourself. Woo hoo.

What: DASH Store Party
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 to 8 pm
Where: Soho at 119 Spring St (between Mercer St & Greene St) 
Why: D.J. Pauly D will be DJing all night and Kim Kardashian will be making an appearance.
WARNING: This will be probably be extremely crowded. Get there early.

What: SAKS Fifth Ave 
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 to 11 pm
Where: 611 5th Avenue
Why: Every floor has different events to chose from changing every hour! Appearances by Donna Karan, Carolina Herrera, Bobbi Brown, Fredrick Fekkai and tons more!

What: Chanel
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 to 8 pm 
Where: 139 Spring Street/15 East 57th
Why: Alexa Chung will host a special DJ set at the brand's Soho store. 57th St will be hosting a make-your-own handbag studio. Customized Chanel Handbag anyone? + Chanel is launching three limited edition blue nail polishes for FNO. With the purchase of a polish, you get a free manicure. 

What: Nars Boutique
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 to 10 pm (Francois will be there from 7 - 9)
Where: 413 Bleecker Street (between Bank and West 11th Streets)
Why: Francois Nars will be mingling and signing special 413 Bleeker merchandise for NARS lovers. Two limited edition products will also be available for purchase: Via Crispi Larger That Life Long-Wear Eyeliner and Space Odyssey Nail Polish that were created exclusively for Fashion's Night out.

What: Sephora
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 to 11 pm
Where: All Sephora locations in the city
Why: Sephora is jammed packed with tons of events to attend at all their locations. For a complete list check out their blog here. My suggestions? Visit Sephora 5th Avenue to see Solange Knowles D.J., head over to Sephora Time Square (7th Ave) to meet Kristin Bauer from True Blood while Kat Von D & Linda Perry perform, check out the new Bite Beauty line at 711 Lexington with two new exclusive sets for fall and play with Make Up For Ever lashes at Sephora Soho. New York fashionistas are given the chance to create their own custom lashes at their first-ever Fashion's Night Out "Lash Lounge."

What: Christopher Street Block Party
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 to 11 pm
Where: Christopher St. between Waverly St & Greenwich Ave.
Why: They'll be food, alcohol and designers.

What: Michael Angelo's Wonderland Beauty Parlor
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 p.m. to 11 pm
Where: 418 W. 13th St. between Ninth Ave. & Washington St.
Why: All about lips! From lipstick portraits, flavor paper digital wallpapers to scratch-and-sniff stickers. + cocktails of course.

What: Yves Saint Laurant
When: Thursday, September 8, from 7 to 10 pm
Where: 3 East 57th St
Why: Ms. Nicki Minah herself will be there playing hostess and honoring the launch of YSL's Cabas Chyc handbag.

What: Tiffany & Co.
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 to 11 pm
Where: 727 Fifth Ave.
Why: Leighton Meester from Gossip Girl will be joining her band, Check in the Dark, for a performance to celebrate the launch of Tiffany's Era collection.

What: Kiehl's Flagship Store
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 to 11 pm
Where: 109 Third Avenue at 13th Street
Why: Karaoke, Cocktails, Carnival & AJ McLean from BSB will be singing at 6:30 + raffle prizes and surprise celebrity performances.

What: Teen Vogue Block Party Essie
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 to 10 pm
Where: Bleecker Street & West 11th Street
Why: Teen Vogue will be taking over Bleecker Street at 11th Street and inviting girls to come out for a Fashion’s Night Out block party that will include free manicures from Essie, among other fun elements. Essie’s celebrity manicurist, Elle Gerstein, will also be on hand to talk nails with the girls and dish on her celebrity clients’ favorite nail looks.

What: INGLOT'S Mini Red Carpet Makeovers
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 to 9 pm
Where: 1592 Broadway
Why: Get glamorized at INGLOT Cosmetics for Fashion’s Night Out. Enjoy cocktails, light hors d’oeuvres + mini makeovers.

What: Macy's Herald Square
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 to 9 pm
Where: 151 West 34th St
Why: Macy's is probably one of the most talked about events of this FNO. They've got tons of celebrities lined up, performances + special events: You don't wanna miss Kelly Rowland and a special performance by Joss Stone at 7!

What: Make Up For Ever Lash Bar at Christian Louboutin
When: Thursday, September 8, from 6 pm
Where: 59 Horatio Street
Why: Eyelashes are really just the beginning at Louboutin. In addition to a lash bar stocked with custom Loub creations for Make Up For Ever, the store will also offer hair styling from Frederic Fekkai. And then there are the two limited-edition items: The Dafodile Brodee platform pump and the Sweety Charity Brodee cross-body bag.

Other events you may want to check out:

Want Free Food? Check out this great post from on the 10 best places to eat on Fashion's Night Out. Vera Wang even has an ice cream truck going around the city. Can you say yum?

Will you guys be attending Fashion's Night Out? Where are your plans?

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