Tweetwalked, live-streamed, celebrity-attended, dramatically staged…all things we’ve come to expect from the seasonal shows. The scale and ambition of these productions, and in turn budgets, are reaching new heights. Their audiences spread from the editors and buyers, to A-listers and bloggers and now to global consumers.
But this week, LVMH announced French fashion house Céline have cancelled their AW12/13 show at Paris Fashion Week in March as head designer, Phoebe Philo, is eight months pregnant. Hang on – that’s sounding pretty humane. Where’s the special FX and superstar DJ? Isn’t the show the be-all and end-all of a brand’s season? LVMH putting the health of the designer before the potential marketing and sales opportunity sends out an interesting message. Instead they will be holding a presentation for select editors and buyers. Could shirking the limelight and reintroducing exclusivity be the alternative option to the show mayhem?
Or perhaps John Galliano‘s pre-show meltdown and the tragedy of Alexander McQueen has made the fashion industry aware that at the centre of this seasonal frenzy is an individual, with human needs. Which leads us to ask: what is the true value of a fashion show to a brand?