So here, today is the final countdown of two months of mental preparation for the CFDA.
Oh god, THE CFDA !!! You’ve already started to send me a lot of comments saying you’ll think about us and THANK YOU !!! (I use a lot of capitals when I am stressed).

Below is the whole story, and because I want to share everything with you I am going to update you about the state of the affairs all day, even when I am on stage. So, stay tuned !!!

March

March 14th, 2:31pm : I get an e-mail telling me that the finalists for the CFDA awards will be announced in a few hours and Scott and my presence would be greatly appreciated.

March 14th, 6:27pm: Diane Von Furstenberg announces that Scott and I will receive the Eugenia Sheppard award. The news takes a second to get into my brain. It’s huge. We tell ourselves that we have to go celebrate.

March 14th : Three glasses of Gavi later, we’re starting to get a grip on what’s happening. We’re getting tons of texts.

I start trying to think of my speech.
You know, that speech. The one we all have somewhere deep inside of us, where we thank our parents, our grand-parents, our school teachers, where you shed a tear and talk about the incredible journey and against all odds and…

Scott stops me right there. We’d better keep it simple, he says.

Yeah, okay.
I guess not everybody has that speech inside them.
I start coming up with a simple speech, chic, and not at all tear-jerky, because we’re not Céline Dion or anything, c’mon. Céline Dion. Céline Dion. Céline, Céline…

Suddenly, I have an epiphany.

“Shit! What am I going to wear?!”

——

April

April, month of the dress.

It’s time to pick out a dress. An American designer, of course. Someone who speaks to me and who would work well on me. I have a few people in mind and send out some e-mails…

April is the month of stress.

An event like this only happens once in a lifetime.
It’s like a wedding, you know?
It’s one of those times where you want to be as close to perfection as you can be.
Like, if one day I had to lose the 10 pounds that stand between normal Garance and dream Garance, that day would be NOW.

April is the month of the official photo.
Craig McDean (CRAIG MCDEAN!!!) is taking our picture on top of a bus right in the middle of Times Square…

Awesome moment.

——–

May.

It’s May and I haven’t lost an ounce. Yeah, maybe even gained a few. It makes sense I guess, as nothing will make you discover a sudden love for ricotta than putting unrealistic weight expectations on yourself.
I tell myself that it’s okay because I’ll go to the gym, yep, starting tomorrow.

I know what I’ll do, I’ll start Bikram yoga. I hear that just melts it away.

My agent Delphine says to me, “No no no, all that heat is going to make you break out!!! You’ll have zits for days!” Bah. Okay, no on the Bikram Yoga.

May, DEREK LAM.

It’s May and I really have to start working on my speech. Scott can keep it as simple as he likes, but I’m going to tell my whole life story like I just got an Oscar. I’m so happy and I want to celebrate that. I’m so happy that I’m going to pull a Benigni.

(I love this : “Thank you to my parents to give me the wonderful gift of poverty.”)

I ask the team at KCD, who’s taking care of the actual show for the CDFA, I ask them just how much time we’ll have on stage.

“One minute. 15 seconds. That’ll be for the two of you.”

Shit! The story of my life in 37 seconds? Pfffff.

The last week of May…

Monday: Yeah okay, haven’t lost an ounce. That’s it.
Tuesday: Dress fitting. If I lose an ounce now, the dress isn’t going to fit. So there you have it.
Wednesday: Dress fitting. I’ll just content myself with being myself.
Thursday: Dress fitting: Derek Lam is at every fitting. I just love this man.
Thursday: Facial. Manicure.
Thursday: Still haven’t gotten my whole life story on paper. I don’t know how or where to start. I watch previous years’ CDFA awards to see what other people did.

Hmmmm.

Suddenly, I have so much less to say.
Like, “Thank you.” That’s enough right? Like Phoebe Philo, who got the award last year.
Oh, hello, you —>
Just like every other time I get stressed out, I feel a little sneaky pain in my low back.

June

Friday, June 1st.

10am: I’m at Pain Quotidien around the corner from my building, my second office, to write my speech. Alex and Emily are there.

The speech comes to me quickly. I time myself with my iPhone. 2 minutes. I cut it down a little, but not too much: Alex says that it doesn’t matter anyway, because once the adrenaline is flowing, I’ll speaksofastanyway.

11am: The last sentence of speech starts to swell up a tear in my eye and when I read it to Emily, she starts crying too. I’m wondering if I should take out this last line or get some waterproof mascara

2pm: Hair and make up test with l’Oréal Paris. Alex and Emily were the ones who told me I absolutely had to do a test even though I had no idea you did that sort of thing.

4pm: Simple, fresh and perfect makeup. Hairstyle: I had this idea of a natural looking bun, but then I saw this editorial that had this amazing giant atomic mushroom hairdo.
I show the picture to my hairdresser who reproduces it to perfection.

I love it. Some of me is wondering if it’s a bit too much? Bah. We’ll just see on Monday.

My mother, live from Ajaccio says no, it’s good.

Scott takes a look at it for 5 minutes and 45 seconds, takes in every angle of my atomic mushroom and says no, it’s not too much. We’re good. “Dramatic” as they say in New York.
Emily and Alex love it.

5pm: I get two manchettes from Reed Krakoff, two fabulous prototypes that aren’t going to be out in stores until next year. Now I’m truly a princess.

5:30: Arrrrgh, my back is getting worse and worse.

7pm: My dress arrives. It’s sublime sitting there on its dress mold. But I’m too stressed to try it on. And what if the mirror at Derek Lam was some sort of magic mirror and if I try it on at home, I’ll someone turn into a pumpkin? I go to bed without trying it on.

What a stupid idea. I spend the entire night having nightmare after nightmare.

Saturday

10am: I catch my breath and try my dress on in front of my mirror. It actually looks really good on me. Actually, yeah… Wow!

I promise myself I’ll spend the weekend thinking of other things.

Sunday

4pm: I spend two hours rewriting my speech. I ask Scott what he’s going to say and he says that he’s not going to write anything because it will lose the all natural feel. He has two important things he wants to say and he knows how he’s going to say them. That’s it. ADMIRATION.
STRESS.

6pm : Still rewriting my speech and then no, I’m just going to say thank you and then proceed to hiding under the table right after. Voilà.
Hope there is a table.

Today

9:28am: In the car, on our way up to the ceremony rehearsal at Lincoln Center. Heavy rain! I am trying to learn my speech by heart. Can’t believe it, I haven’t done that since college!

10:13am: The room is big!!! The stage is high! I am losing my breath as I rehearse my speech.
Good news, the teleprompter works like magic.
It’s the same one presidents use–now I understand what are those little pieces of glass that you always see in front of the president!!!
Oh and we kept the big news but now I think we can say it–Pharrell Williams is presenting us with our award!!!

12:50pm: It’s just impossible to work today — I’ve decided to go for a run. An under the rain run, which is perfect for my brain.
No seriously. What would you do on a day like this?

1:54pm: Tried a massage – baaaaaaad idea: when you can’t relax during a massage, having somebody touch you becomes super annoying! Decided to go have lunch and a glass of wine instead. Now that’s a good idea!
By the way. Do you have any “stage” techniques? Some stuff I should tell myself before I go up there?

3:08pm: Hair and make up are here.
Now the real countdown starts.
By now i’ve decided to simply be in denial.
Stressed, me?
Noouuuuhhh. No more.

6:20pm: Dress is on, make up is on, jewelry is on, shoes are on, car is downstairs…Scott is in the shower.

6:30pm: We’re on our way!

Top Image courtesy of the CFDA Awards Journal, shot by Craig McDean.