It is the second day into what I have created Luxury Week London. I was hosted by Metropolitan by COMO situated on Old Park Lane in Mayfair. I had almost a three hour spa treatment, which included a facial. I did have make-up on but after an hour facial it obviously came off. I only wear make-up when I am at an event or business meetings. I am not confident in applying make-up and not very good at it. After many years being around mainly men. There is always the debate about, do I look better with make -up or not? I can honestly say, for men it is a personal thing. Some men love make- up on women and some clearly don’t. On this occasion, because my face looked brilliant after the treatment, it made perfect sense not to wear it, no matter who I was about to meet.
It has been almost two years since not interviewing or seeing David Gandy. My first catwalk was Topman and thanks to the hotel I pulled up in a nice Jaguar. For whatever reason I had put the wrong time in my manic working calendar, so for my second catwalk of the day, I thought I had only minutes, to get to this event. But I ended up being one hour too early. With my partner in crime and great photographer Maria Scard guess who I ran into?
David Gandy – Oh No!
I wanted to experiment in 2016, regarding David Gandy and my social media influence. I wanted to do twenty second tweet interviews on my personal social media, capturing the moment and growing my influence as the female voice for menswear. I’ve learnt a lot in two years regarding social media marketing. I also wanted to analyse where my Gandy fans support, were in relation to their following of both me and David. After all it had been two years since our last interview.
I was the first woman to interview David Gandy way back in 2013, at London Collections:Men. My social media influence, right from the onset with David Gandy was always a brilliant social media marketing winner. After three years, I was impressed to see that it had grown even more. That meant my association with David was stronger than ever, as a female voice for menswear.
— Gracie Opulanza (@gracieopulanza) June 13, 2016
My mobile phone interview
The last time I had an interview with David was way back in 2014, I looked like this.
In the past I would be doing all the rounds for MenStyleFashion running around trying to build my brand. Trying to go to as many events as I could. I would exhaust myself till I dropped, get all worked up over nothing. I giggle looking back how hard I worked, but being very new as a fashion blogger. I knew, unless you’re lucky and blessed with God given Vogue looks. You’re never going to make it in this industry on looks alone.
I am living proof, if you think out side the box, and have a plan you can make it work for yourself. But it is hard long slow grind and a lot of set backs and nasty people alone the way. I am glad in 2016, that I have never given into people pleasing and I have ran my own race.
Like everything you grow and learn and this LC:M I was on a different mission. I knew what my role was during LC:M and what my followers wanted to see and learn.
— Gracie Opulanza (@gracieopulanza) June 12, 2016
I wanted to understand as the female voice for menswear how engaging my twitter was on @gracieopulanza. I have a platform of one million followers across all my brands. I am what my friends call, the social media queen, the woman who is known as, noise on-line. My followers since 2013, no that when it comes to David Gandy, I make a lot of noise on-line.
David is busy and doesn’t give me much time and therefore I will speak to him when I can or on most occasions just film his street style. On this occasion I was the only one tweeting film whenever I saw him.
— Gracie Opulanza (@gracieopulanza) June 15, 2016
London Collections: Men – My Mobile Phone
In the past I would have a professional cameraman with me or a camera. But it’s too heavy, too slow when you are at events like this. With mobile phone technology now in mintues I can tweet out the interview. I have all the apps on my phone and can control my social media on my phone. I’ve not done it like this before so here is how it all played out.
I didn’t realise I had my phone camera on. David asks, are you doing all the rounds? Which he is referring to the catwalks and presentations, there are 78 to be exact to cover over the four days. My response and understandably so, leaves David a tad confused. I know he is shocked that I don’t devote all my time to LC:M anymore.
That is a choice I have not made and to be honest going into LC:M this time was a very nervous and unsettling time for me. It has been unsafe environment for me in the past and it is one of the reasons why I have not attended.
David I’m Not Wearing Makeup
I realise when seeing David, I am not wearing any makeup. The reason is, I had just come back from a facial in Mayfair and dashed out forgetting to put it on. This was never planned, to go to catwalks with no makeup.
I am blessed because I have olive skin and it glows when looked after. With two facials and two body scrubs in less than three days, why on earth would I wear makeup. I am noticing a lot of celebrities now are choosing to showcase their face with no make up in on social media. One of my reasons I think this is happening as it get’s more engagement to their readers. For me you have be very bold and confident, regarding your natural skin complexion, in going out in public with no makeup. But you have to be more confident to come face to face with Britain’s most successful male model. Who let’s face it, is naturally good looking.
So to any women out there reading, be inspired because, if I can face David Gandy with no makeup, then you can too.
Met JumpSuit Or Onesie
David was interested in my play-suit or in his own words a onesie. He asks is that an all in one? Phew thank goodness for my denim MET bling Jumpsuit, which later in another conversation David Gandy asks again about it. I had a bad accident in where I fractured my shoulder blade. So I am physically out of shape and there for this jumpsuit was really tight. It is an Italian brand which I love because every now and then they come up with some super bling outfits. The jumpsuit I bought over two years ago and never wore it. I am like that I wait to the moment is right. I knew how denim jump suits have really taken off this season and this was the time to show everyone my personal sense of style. The bling on it just rocks and I teamed it with my Philipp Plein leather boots. The combination was very empowering for me on the day as I knew that the outfit was a real strong statement of who I am in 2016.
Menswear for 2016
I wrote my point of view and why I don’t like woman showcasing at London Collections:Men You can read that here. As I continue to explore the world of menswear and luxury reviews I do ponder what it means to live a life of luxury. For me it is a well dressed guy making an effort, choosing to be who he can by wearing what ever he likes. It is about good honest people being nice to you no matter what. It is about looking at yourself in the mirror and knowing who you are and not to be afraid to show your true self. Both inside and out wearing no makeup.
It is about friendship and doing the best job you can in that given moment. It is about remaining well mannered in this industry even when you get bullied. Even when you thought the person you marketed for free totally ignores you. I am a huge believer that when someone treats you poorly you kill them with kindness. Trust me it works every single time.
From the moment I met David Gandy I was no one else but myself, not having to prove a thing. Not being intimidated by his looks, his overpowering blue eyes and those damn gorgeous outfits of his.
— Gracie Opulanza (@gracieopulanza) June 16, 2016
— Gracie Opulanza (@gracieopulanza) June 11, 2016
— Gracie Opulanza (@gracieopulanza) June 23, 2016