Fashion designers have been worrying that sales will continue to decline as the state of the economy has not improved much in the last three years. So much so that labels are actually skipping NY Fashion Week in favor of events where buyers will be in attendance. Just days after John Galliano was found guilty of attacking an interracial couple in Paris with racial slurs, many designers let out a sigh of relief. Although Galliano’s actions are in no way representative of the fashion community as a whole, his sentence was completely fitting. Now that event organizers are able to focus on ushering guests to their seats, the real question is if this year’s New York Fashion Week will be a success.
Usually, the first day of NY Fashion Week is busy. However, only a handful of designers showed their collections as scheduled. The fact of the matter is that consumers are not buying high fashion labels like they have in the past. With fewer shoppers available, boutiques and departments stores are becoming more selective about the labels that they carry.
Richard Chai offered a contemporary mix of ethnic prints and stylish accessories in his spring/summer collection. Betsey Johnson dressed her models up like candy colored 1950s pin-up girls, complete with red lipstick and coifed hair. Excitement is still in the air, but the overall outlook is poor. Fashion designers can present the most beautiful collections, but if there are no buyers, no one will be able to wear them. The good news is that the labels that are able to survive this financial crisis will thrive in the future, but it will be difficult for unknown designers to make their mark. Gucci, Fendi, Dolce & Gabbana and all of the other staples of the fashion world will be presenting their collections in the next few days.