New York’s Bridal Fashion Week has just wrapped, which means the team at The Knot — including Kellie Gould, editor-in-chief of XO Group (which owns The Knot, The Bump and The Nest) — can breathe a lot easier.
Show-hopping has come to a halt, its coinciding trade show (The Knot Couture) has wrapped and its robust, up-to-the-minute runway coverage can wind down — though, as Gould explained, it’s definitely not going away. “We use this market for a few months and a few issues,” she said. “We’re thinking of editorial ideas at the shows, and even before the week begins.”
Today, The Knot claims to reach 8 out of 10 engaged couples in the U.S. — either through its website, its app or its print publication. The network sees 11 million unique visitors per month. In 2016, the app saw 212,000 average views monthly, up 19 percent from 2015.
Gould has made Facebook Live a key component of The Knot’s social strategy. “It’s a chance to give our readers access to the amazing group of wedding professionals we work with on a regular basis,” she said. For instance, brides-to-be and couples can ask industry insiders, from designers to wedding planners, for advice.
She has also given the print magazine a new, sophisticated look and a more fashion-forward cover. Next up is the rollout of The Knot Newlywed Fund, a registry of sorts that will allow engaged couples to choose big-ticket items (like a house or a honeymoon) and guests to contribute money. This past week, during “BFW” in New York, she documented one of her typical days. Her diary has been lightly edited for clarity.
6:00 a.m.: I wake up, check my email and then start getting ready. (I always check my email first, just to make sure nothing urgent happened overnight.) I’ve got a long day of bridal fashion shows ahead; my team and I are seeing some of the best and most iconic designers in the business today, and I’m truly excited.
Because it’s Bridal Fashion Week, I put a lot of extra effort into making sure I have the right outfit: I pull out the fancy shoes I don’t wear to work every day, and I spend more time on my hair and makeup. I always have these big ideas, like I’m going to call a glam squad or something, but I inevitably wind up doing everything myself.
6:30 a.m.: I need all the energy I can get, so I start the day with a power breakfast: French press coffee, and oatmeal with bananas and walnuts.
8:00 a.m.: Once I’m BFW-ready, I hop in a car and make the trip from Brooklyn to our offices in downtown Manhattan for a quick check-in with my team, a layout review of The Knot’s Fall Fashion issue, and a look at how our coverage of the week is shaping up on Front Row to Fashion and across our social media channels. We launched a new Instagram account, @theknotfashion, as part of Bridal Fashion Week, and I’m thrilled to be sharing even more fashion inspiration with our audience.
11:00 a.m.: My first runway show today is Oscar de la Renta, which is always highly anticipated, but it’s even more so this season because it’s the first Oscar bridal collection for the brand’s new co-creative directors, Fernando Garcia and Laura Kim. The collection is as pretty and feminine as ever, but it has the designers’ own distinctive touches. It’s a little edgier, and some pieces are just fun — like a white denim jacket with “Just Married” across the back.
A look from the Oscar de la Renta spring 2018 bridal collection (Image via theknot.com)
12:00 p.m.: The Knot team and I are off to see the Ines Di Santo show, one of my favorites every season. Fortunately, we have our favorite BFW driver, Vic, taking us around today, and he navigates the congested city like the true pro he is. We arrive with time to spare, and catch up with industry friends and colleagues before the show starts. It’s a less theatrical show than previous seasons, but no less beautiful. I love the luxurious details and sultry silhouettes.
1:00 p.m.: We are all a little giddy about the thought of having a 30-minute break for lunch — it’s rare during BFW. We head to the nearest cafe for more power food, and I order a tabouli and quinoa salad. Minutes later, we’re off again to see the bold and beautiful designs of Naeem Khan.
2:00 p.m.: Naeem’s runway is at his showroom on West 36th Street. It’s a tight fit for the eager editors, bloggers and industry pros in attendance. We take our front row seats and enjoy the artistry of the hand-embroidered peplums and crystal beading, and one ostrich-feather trim cape. Then we dash to the elevator to get to our next appointment.
3:00 p.m.: Next up: Rivini. We’re greeted by designer Rita Vinieris and her lovely team, who offer us champagne with hibiscus flowers. I’m tempted, but go for the coffee instead. We’ve still got a long afternoon and evening ahead of us! Since they’re doing a presentation instead of a runway show this season, we have a chance to talk to Rita about her inspiration for the collection, which she describes as “a journey through the pink looking glass.” We leave filled with new editorial ideas.
4:00 p.m.: We head downtown to see Jenny Packham’s circus-themed runway show, inspired by the novel “Falling” by Colin Thubron. This is the most theatrical show I’ve seen this market; I’m impressed by Jenny’s big production and elegant, but also daring (think: bright red dresses), collection.
A look from the Jenny Packham spring 2018 bridal collection (Image via theknot.com)
5:00 p.m.: It’s off to Carnegie Hall for Monique Lhuillier’s spring 2018 bridal show. Vic makes the slow drive back uptown, while we freshen up and check emails and social media. Once inside, we are quickly seated, and the show begins. Monique’s collection is regal and incredibly romantic, with layers of tulle, Chantilly lace and silk organza throughout.
6:00 p.m.: I always love going to Carolina Herrera, because her salon, team and designs are the epitome of elegance. This visit does not disappoint. It was a special delight to say hello to Mrs. Herrera, whose timeless fashion has always been a favorite of mine.
7:00 p.m.: I’m not going to lie, our feet hurt. But we’ve got one more exciting show to attend: JLM, which will feature five different collections, including Lazaro and three lines designed by Hayley Paige. Vic takes us to the pre-show cocktail party at Chelsea Market, and we meet up with our Dream Wedding couple, Elena Delle Donne and Amanda Clifton, and also the incredibly talented wedding planner and designer Jove Meyer, who are all joining us tonight.
8:15 p.m.: We’re in our seats, and the show begins. Hayley’s ultra-feminine, whimsical designs are truly a delight. There are so many different looks tonight, it’s hard to choose a favorite.
9:45 p.m.: It has been a really inspiring, but exhausting day. As I crawl into my car, I pull off my Louboutins, drop off my team and head home to Brooklyn.
10:30 p.m.: I’m finally home, and starving! Time for a bowl of Thai noodles and a chat with my husband — glamorous, I know.
11:30 p.m.: I walk into my kids’ rooms and give them each a kiss. My husband insists I like to wake them up, but I just can’t go to sleep without seeing their sweet faces! Then it’s off to bed for some much needed rest before for another day of shows and appointments at our The Knot Couture Show.