The world's most major fashion designers are not necessarily chalking up their success to just a lucky roll of the dice. Inventiveness, perseverance, talent — yep, those things matter, too. But, just like how you break out that horseshoe necklace for a big work presentation or the raggedy teddy bear you secretly stash at the bottom of a suitcase, the superstar designers showing at New York Fashion Week rely on their own preshow routines and special charms to boost those positive vibes.
Okay, no, we don't have concrete proof that a lucky coin or a stuffed toy can really help a designer sky rocket his or her collection to next-level brilliance and fame. But, if names like Burch, Zoe, Minkoff, and von Furstenberg sound familiar (yes, that's rhetorical), then we wouldn't be surprised if these lucky charms contain just a little bit of magic in them after all.
With T-minus eight days to the start of NYFW, we tracked down some of our favorite designers and got them to spill on the preshow rituals, superstitions, and, yes, lucky charms that haven't steered them wrong.
“My good luck charm is a gold coin my father gave to me...a 20-francs piece he wore in his shoe during the war, and he gave it to me when I was a little girl. Now I tape it into my shoe
for every fashion show.” — Diane von FurstenbergPhoto: Courtesy of Diane von Furstenberg
"[My son, Luca,] he’s with me as often as possible and always backstage with my husband during [Fashion Week] showtime.”
— Rebecca Minkoff
Photographed by Mindy Best
"I’m just a tiny bit superstitious and totally believe in karma so pre-Fashion Week, I tip everyone really well — waiters, cab drivers, manicurists, everybody."
— Amy Smilovic, Tibi
Photographed by Mindy Best
"My pre-NYFW ritual for good luck is always getting a fresh, new haircut the week before my show and a Triad Facial from Dr. Colbert to make me look like I am rested when I really haven't slept in weeks."
— Richard Chai
Photo: Courtesy of Richard Chai
"I have so many lucky charms: An amazing team of people working hard and contributing brilliant ideas. We have our show-day ritual of getting dressed from the edited items on the rack after all the looks are finalized. Surely though, my most valued lucky charms are my supportive partner, Sean, and our dedicated nanny, Yvonna."
— Rachel Comey
Photo: Courtesy of Takemi Photography
“I always travel with a red ribbon for good luck — it’s a tradition passed down from my great-grandmother.”
— Tory Burch
Photo: Courtesy of Noa Griffel/Vogue Brazil
"[Four leaf clovers.] I have always had a talent for finding them. I press them and put one in my wallet for luck when I think I might need it!”
— Deborah Lloyd, Kate Spade New York
Photo: Courtesy of Kate Spade New York
"My lucky charms are definitely my husband and son. Seeing them in the front row of my show is everything."
— Rachel Zoe
Photo: Courtesy of Rachel Zoe
"I never leave the house without wearing one of my mom's signature bracelets from her jewelry line, Shema-Or."
— Jonathan Simkhai
Photo: Courtesy of Jonathan Simkhai
"Seashells are my favorite thing to collect and my good luck symbol. No two seashells are alike. The more rare and beautiful the shell found within its element, the harder the work to find them — therefore, special like none other. [It's] similar to our own work: The more effort, the more exquisite the outcome. Shells remind me of this and the beauty and the story that lies within everyone."
— Rachel Roy
Photographed by Sam Horine
"My lucky charm is my Mogu Dog — it’s been with me for 15-20 years…that’s longer than my kids! I carry my Mogu Dog everywhere. It never fails to give me a great night’s rest and a little love when needed, which is always a good thing when I’m under stress."
— Lubov Azria, BCBG Max Azria
Photo: Courtesy of BCBG Max Azria
"I wouldn’t consider myself superstitious. My mother always said step out with your right foot first, carry something red, and Tuesdays are supposed to be lucky. I haven’t been proven wrong yet."
— Steven Alan
Photo: Courtesy of Steven Alan
“My nail color! I always think certain patterns and colors are good luck! I go through phases!”
— Stacey Bendet, Alice + Olivia
Photographed by Sunny Shokrae
"Clover Canyon celebrates many occasions with a piñata party. We have a special orange robot piñata named Robbie the Robot, who luckily escaped our candy bashing and enjoys his freedom in the design room. Robbie is our three-foot happy & lucky charm."
— Rozae Nichols, Clover Canyon
Photo: Courtesy of Clover Canyon
"A squeaky lamb that was the favorite toy of my childhood dog and best friend. It currently lives in my sock drawer, safely removed from the mouth of my current dog!"
— Wes Gordon
Photo: Courtesy of Wes Gordon
“My dogs are my lucky charms every day, and during Fashion Week, they definitely help to lighten the mood.”
— Kimberly Ovitz
Photo: Courtesy of Kimberly Ovitz
"I have a rose quartz crystal that I carry in my pocket."
— Erin Fetherston
Photographed by Sara Haile
"[My one-eye cat, I.D.] She always has one eye on the world but she has a better view on everything. She's VPL's muse not only because of her color but her view."
— Victoria Bartlett, VPL
Photo: Courtesy of VPL
“My husband (who is also my partner) is always with me at the show and keeps me from getting too nutty. He is also incredibly forgiving of my preshow neurosis and is a pretty good lucky charm.”
— Whitney Pozgay, Whit
Photo: Courtesy of Whit
"I never take off my evil eye bracelet by Lorraine Schwartz; it’s my lucky charm."
— Charlotte Ronson
Photo: Courtesy of Charlotte Ronson
"I have two lucky charms: my gold pendent necklace that was given to me from my fiancé — it was his grandfather Gaston's. And my other lucky charm is my pup's first dog tag that fell off her leash. Her name is Max, and she's been through a lot with me. I've had her for 12 years. She's the apple of my eye."
— Marissa Webb
Photo: Courtesy of Marissa Webb
"A spoonful of honey from my husband's beehive."
— Trina Turk
Photo: Courtesy of Trina Turk
"My lucky charm is my pendant necklace. I've collected various pendants that are significant to me over the years, including one from my husband that I always wear for the important events in my life."
— Kaelen Haworth, Kaelen
Photo: Courtesy of Kaelen
"My lucky charm (and charmer) is [my dog,] Stitch. He is at every show and just keeps things calm and collected backstage."
— Lela Rose
Photo: Courtesy of Lela Rose
"My lucky charm necklace is one piece I always love to wear. It's full of various lucky symbols. I mean, who doesn’t love a little bit of luck!"
— Jennifer Meyer
Photo: Courtesy of Jennifer Meyer
"I have a jade necklace that I've had for years — I wear it every single day. My parents are strong believers in Feng Shui so they brought me to see renowned Feng Shui Master Tin Sun, who has consulted for clients like Elie Tahari and Donald Trump. They bought the necklace for me after he advised that it would be good for my future and provide protection and positive energy."
— Ann Yee
Photo: Courtesy of Ann Yee
"Every season, I have to sew a few garments myself. It is important to give my 'personal touch' to each collection. I insist on using a particular machine, which once belonged to my best friend’s grandmother. I truly believe that it got the both of us though college — we would have late night tag-team sewing sessions. It’s an impossibly heavy machine that I lug with me from Brooklyn each season just to have with me at the shows for final touches. I like to think that my personal effort shows in the final product.”
— Daniel Vosovic
Photo: Courtesy of Daniel Vosovic