The excitement of a fashion show electrifies the air. While spectators enjoy the procession of cutting-edge ensembles, it helps to educate them about the brands, fabrications, and prices of the clothes and accessories parading before them. That’s where a detailed and descriptive run-of-show comes in.
Everything in Order
The first step when listing descriptions of outfits in the show is to determine their order. Write each one down, beginning with the name of the model. It’s easier if each model is wearing just one look. But if any or all models are walking more than once, sequence the lineup in a way that gives maximum time to change clothes. Include information about how some pieces typify a seasonal trend, in case the commentator needs to stretch out remarks to give the next model more time to appear. “Despite the fact that the outfit is right in front of the attendees’ eyes, people like to hear fun facts about a beautiful piece of clothing,” says Debbie Norrell, a veteran fashion model, longtime fashion show organizer and commentator, and lifestyle editor for the “New Pittsburgh Courier.”
Fleshing It Out
Now that you’ve determined who is going when, fill in some critical details. The most important part of the description is who designed the clothes, so write down the brand or label. Next, add details about what people see, such as the fabric content and unusual embellishments — for example, whether the rabbit fur trim on a jacket is real or faux; dyed or the natural color. Explain that the glimmer in a sweater is Lurex, embroidery or something else. Anticipate the audience’s basic questions and concisely answer them, including information such as whether a garment is washable.”Perhaps the garment is made from some unique material that is not evident to the eye,” adds Norrell. “Does the garment travel well? Where can I wear it? How can I incorporate it into my wardrobe and wear it with existing pieces? One must remember that not everyone knows fashion in and out.”
Explain the Cost
Fashion show spectators usually want to know how much something costs, so include prices in the script. It’s also relevant and helpful to note where in stores, online or elsewhere you can purchase the pieces. If a price will be provided only upon special request — sometimes the case with extremely expensive fashion — then say so. Some shows are planned with the intent of selling merchandise on the spot. If items can be purchased right off the runway, let the audience know.
Wrapping It Up
Avoid stating the obvious, such as the color of a garment, because spectators can see that for themselves. Instead, enhance the description by putting the ensemble in context, such as noting whether something is a timeless classic or a hot trend. Your finished run-of-show should be concise, yet thorough and pleasing to the ear. For example: “Vanessa wears a black jersey wrap dress by Georgia Grant, a classic silhouette that flatters every figure. It’s $300 at Diva Dresses. The turquoise necklace and pierced earrings set by Trudy are $160; the hand-carved mahogany bracelet by Fireside Designs is $95, and the canvas and burlap platform wedges by Shoe-In — a wardrobe must-have this season — are $150; all from Finishing Touches Boutique. This is an ensemble that can easily go from the office to an evening function.”
References and ResourcesInterview: Debbie Norrell; October 27, 2014, Pittsburgh, PA
Iowa State University Extension and Outreach 4-H Youth Development: Commentary Tips