Burberry, the British luxury brand, announced that from September they will be done with the traditional format of fashion week, down from the usual four shows per year to only two shows. Frocks showcased on the runway can immediately be available online or through their stores globally.
Burberry is calling this, “See now, buy now”.
Tom Ford has also followed suit.
“I am not forgoing the season at all but will simply be communicating directly with the consumers at the time the clothes and accessories will be available to buy,” said Mr. Ford to Time, “As for the buyers, they will see the collection, as usual, well in advance so that they can place orders.”
This is a huge game changer.
For decades, it took six months for consumers to get their hands on the collection. That is why fashion week is going to go through a major revamp.
According to Wall Street Journal, representatives from the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA), which oversees New York Fashion Week, has set up a meeting with their London and Milan counterparts in London in November to discuss the changing tide of the industry. Paris, through their spokesman, was said to be open to coordinating with other cities.
We think fast fashion definitely exacerbates the changing tide of the current format of fashion week. They can deliver a carbon copy of designs from the runway to the market faster than six months and it definitely hurts luxury brands.
With the advancement of technology, we’re afraid that we might be watching the last leg of fashion week.
Fashion week could, in the future, only be reserved for mega luxury brands like Prada or Chanel just for the prestige, while many other designers could look at other avenues to showcase their designs either through Instagram or through other mediums such as partnerships with e-commerce websites like RewardStyle.
It makes sense because to produce a fashion show requires plenty of capital in which independent designers might not have the means. It’s also a way to connect designers, (who sometimes might be snubbed by fashion critics or buyers) directly to their customers.
Speaking of buyers, if this trend continues, their job scope will slowly diminish. Why would a company put so much faith on personal taste when there is concrete data online to prove that these items sell like hot cakes, say, for example in Dubai?