*breaking news : so long to the seasons?
…well, not really. Haha.
As previously reported, the fashion world is going through such exciting – for lack of a better word – changes.
“The only constant is change.” – Heraclitus
And truer words have ne’er been spoken!
After some major reshaping of the fashion calendar last year – with designers choosing to show IN season as opposed to 6 months before (See Now, Buy Now), 2017 is already seeing another adjustment to the showing listing.
A handful of designers have begun to merge their menswear and womenswear lines due to the collections being on the same production and distribution schedule, moving their newly formed ONE show to either the mens’ or womens’ schedule.
It’s actually quite interesting that brands have not thought to merge lines before, although some designers (:- see Anna Sui) have shown male looks intermixed, and others have featured menswear ON female models – with some admitting that they design for “whoever wants it.”
In fact, it almost seems an obvious decision considering that combining the two will be easier on a lot of resources in the production line and can be seen as fiscally efficient in today’s tough economic climate.
Ideally, the output of male and female collections should be birthed from a similar prompt, with both a masculine and feminine reaction to the same stimulus . Therefore, the fusion of collections only seems practical.
Creating [one] show for both men’s and women’s collections is “a much more realistic process, as well as from a production and design point of view”, said Sid Bryan, one of small-label Sibling’s stylists.
However, this approach may not work for a lot of brands (much like the See Now, Buy Now model), especially the ones not already united under a single creative director; one who will ensure compatibility of the two collections.
Alessandro Michele, Creative Director of Gucci – one of the first brands to fuse its lines – and proponent of this unified approach, describes it as “a natural progression” and states that the maintenance of two, distinct calendars has [only] been done “out of tradition rather than practicality.”
And, while Michele is eager as a creative to see how this change shapes his storytelling, he knows that this change is easier said than done.
Hm. So how does this affect Fashion Week?
Well…I’m not quite sure to be honest.
With some mixed-gender shows moving to the Menswear roster1, some moving to the Womenswear roster2, some shows dropping off the calendar completely3, it’s all just a big whirlwind of changes.
Many professionals point out the fact that brands have already begun to move away from using terms like “Resort,” “Pre-Fall,” etc, instead referring to lines as “Collection 1, 2, 3…etc.” indicating a constant stream of creative output, rather than a conscious delineation between lines.
While the long term impact on Fashion Week: Mens is yet to be seen – Will it survive? Will it ultimately be assimilated into the larger roster? Immediately, the shows benefit from a larger audience and possibly more press due to familiar female faces being featured in the shows.
Despite this, most of the concerns arise in terms of the industry side.
More work for less journalists? Would a company now have to send a men’s and women’s buyer to the same show? And what about lodgings? Taxis? Seating at venues?
Regardless, one can only wait to see what happens. And, while there is a lot of uncertainty in the air, it seems that the only definite is that brands are now conscious of the amount of showings they have a year. Some houses have as much as eight shows! – and are making concerted efforts to optimize all aspects of their business.
Cause if it’s one thing change forces us to do, it’s adapt.
We’ll see how it goes lovelies. But for now, sit back and enjoy the ride.
1Moschino, DSquared2, Kenzo
2Calvin Klein, Burberry, Bottega Veneta, Tom Ford