I've written many blog entries for SHOWstudio - 782 at last count - but this is without a shadow of a doubt the most difficult, being as it is my final post as Fashion Director of the site. Difficult not only because of the sentiments it needs to express, but also because of the limits of space and the people that deserve to be thanked. Anyway, let's make a stab.
I would like to thank Nick and Charlotte for their faith, perseverance, patience and enthusiasm throughout our five years working together - never mind the inspiration they gave me each and every day. I feel incredibly grateful and privileged to have worked alongside them. The same is true of the SHOWstudio team. I would like to thank whole and warm-heartedly the team I took my first fledgling fashion steps with - Penny Martin, Pauls Hetherington and Bruty, Ross Phillips, Harry Hanrahan and Dorian Moore. There is a new team in place at SHOWstudio now - Carrie Scott, Amy Ireland, Sally Northmore, Marie Schuller, Neal Bryant, Jon Emmony, Niamh White and another Paul (Herron this time). There are also new Mayfair premises rather swankier than the Ironmonger Row basement I started in - but the raw passion of the team behind SHOWstudio remains. It is that passion that really drives SHOWstudio, and has made it such an exhilarating place to work, each and every day. The same is undoubtedly true of SHOWstudio's loyal bands of interns - many of whom have channelled that success into enormous success in the industry, with more than a few here at SHOWstudio (myself included). I am grateful to them for everything, from covering the collections alongside me, to brewing seemingly endless cups of tea, to the hard-put fashion week task of ticket chasing and keeping a frenzied fashion director sane (not necessarily in that order).
A monolithic debt of gratitude is undoubtedly due to each and every one of SHOWstudio's contributors - larger than the SHOWstudio team, but no less dedicated, devoting their time and energies for the love of the art. My tenure here would have meant nothing without their collaboration. A huge thank you to all our contributing journalists and to the teams of catwalking.com and NowFashion.com whose images have helped make our collections coverage world-class.
In five years of working here, it's impossible to pinpoint a highlight - not because there were too few, but simply because there are far too many. A dozen could be pinned down, maybe - from live Fashion DJs radio broadcasts, to 3-D scanning Daphne Guinness in Alexander McQueen's finest, to interviewing the shy and retiring music megastar Lady Gaga (never mind fashion heroes like Lady Amanda Harlech and Suzy Menkes). Then there are the shoots, the night spent riding up and down escalators with Raquel Zimmermann naked except for a mink pom-pom (her, that is, not me), and the thousand or so fashion shows I've had the immense privilege of attending, upending, occasionally admonishing but oh-so-often adoring. I remember that spring 2009 Lanvin show that had me standing on my chair and cheering, with sheer elation. It's a feeling I've had quite often at SHOWstudio - and is my overriding memory of my time with the team, old and new. Thank you all.