In the blink of an eye, our summer vacation dissipated into nothing more than a recent memory and all students-alike got swept up into the nervous excitement of the back to school season. We all revamped our wardrobes; comparison shopped for the best deals on textbooks and mentally prepared ourselves for another intense 15 weeks of studying. However, these early weeks of September have a different meaning for us fashion students: fashion week. The start of our semester is more than just reviewing syllabi and completing introductory assignments; we are volunteering until the late hours of the night, rushing around from show to show, waiting in crowded lines in hopes of a celebrity sighting and analyzing every trend we can find in the media. This fashion week in particular, was more than just about the runway trends we observed as fashion-lovers. This fashion week, allowed us – as business students – to analyze changes in the retail market.
The most apparent and radical change being the implementation of a runway to retail strategy. “The see-now-buy-now” movement cuts out the standard 4-6 month waiting time and makes the runway looks immediately shoppable for consumers. This approach was executed (and successfully so) this past week by recognizable brand names; including, Rebecca Minkoff, Burberry, Tom Ford, Tommy Hilfiger and Ralph Lauren. Closing this time gap is predicted to have a huge impact on the entire organization of fashion weeks and the retail industry; which only proves the influence that fast-fashion and modern media platforms have had on the fashion industry in recent years.
This topic is thoroughly explored in Dana Thomas’s novel Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster. Published in 2007, Thomas explores in detail the idea’s of how mass accessibility can be harmful to an establishment’s brand image and can actually lead to the loss of their critical and affluent consumer base. While “runway-to-retail” seems like the strongest move in the fashion industry now, Thomas’s theory proposes that over time, these choices could be detrimental. You can pick up her at the Adrian G. Marcuse Library and analyze for yourself if the see-now buy-now movement is the best move for brands.
Author: Dana Thomas
Call Number: 338.47 THO
Posted on September 19, 2016 I Blog post by Danielle White (student worker of the LIM College Library)