Farzana Alam Piya
Research Assistant, Textile Focus
Breaking down the concept of the fashion show, fashion week has become more of a general introduction to the newest trends catching the eye of the press and spreading attractive images of the collection through internet. Fashion week is a week-running fashion industry event where fashion designers and fashion houses sashay their latest collections on the ramp walk to potential buyers across the world. Originated from the heart of international fashion, Paris, these events influence the trends for the current and upcoming seasons. Generally, the fashion weeks take place twice a year. From January to March, the Fall-Winter collections of the coming year are presented, while from June to October the Spring-Summer collection of the following year are displayed.
There are “4 Big” Fashion Weeks around the world.
Paris Fashion Week, France
Paris Fashion Week is a dream-come-true event for today’s fashion designers and models, attended by designers all over the globe, like Balenciaga, Dior Homme, Nica Ricci, and Louis Vuitton. Both the women’s prêt-a-porter and men’s tailoring collections are the stars of this particular show.
Paris Fashion Week was started in 1973 as an initiative by the then French Government to collect funds for the renovation of the iconic “Versailles Palace”. The first edition was a major hit, with the participation of some of the biggest names at the time such as Givenchy, Yves Saint Laurent and Oscar de la Renta and all of which are still active today.
Contribution of this city to fashion industry is more than any other fashion capital. Without Paris, fashion industry cannot be imagined
Milan Fashion Week, Italy
Milan Fashion Week is a massive affair highlighting all ranges of fashion trends in all four major fashion seasons, including more than 40 shows each season. It first took place in 1958 and was partially organized by The National Chamber for Italian Fashion. Till then it was organized twice a year showcasing the designs of Armani, Roberto Cavalli, Dolce & Gabbana, Etro, Fendi, Ferragamo, Gucci, Jil Sander, Marni, Max Mara, Missoni, Moschino, Philipp Plein, Prada, Pucci, John Richmond, Tod’s, Versace and so on.
Designers, stylists, influencers, and models are all focused through the glamorous lens of Italian fashion to become the center of attention for a few days.
New York Fashion Week, United States
New York Fashion Week is a major hit for both fashion designers and celebrities from the entertainment industry. It is organized twice a year, in February and in September, showcasing Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Badgley Mischka, Michael Kors etc.
First edition of New York Fashion Week (originally called Press Week) took place in 1943 as the first platform originally to show off American fashion on a global level (until then, American fashion was somewhat eclipsed by the French industry) as well as to draw the attention of new fashion designers who couldn’t travel to Paris, during WWII.
London Fashion Week England
London Fashion Week is the youngest of the “Big Four”, but is a tough competitor witnessing Alexander White, Margaret Howell, Simone Rocha and so on. Along with Paris, Milan and New York, London is at the center of the world’s fashion industry, where everyone else finds out about the latest trends.
This first took place in 1984 organized by the British Fashion Council every two years in London. Currently it is being organized by the British Fashion Council. It was the first fashion week to conduct a live broadcast of its shows over the internet in 2012.
Besides the 4 big fashion weeks, Tokyo Fashion Week (Japan), Lakme Fashion Week (Mumbai, India), Berlin Fashion Week (Germany), Madrid Fashion Week (Spain) , Australia Fashion Week are most prestigious fashion weeks of the time, with globally growing popularity.
Influence of Fashion Weeks on Market
Fashion weeks are boon for the fashion industry. It has become a visitants for fashion designer, buyers, apparel manufacturers and fashion journalists all over the world where the designers express their creative skills and talents to promote their products. These shows influence style, color, textile design, printing techniques and materials. Fashion weeks introduce us with the latest trends for current and upcoming seasons. These shows are way to celebrate variety and to discover new talent and brand names. Besides, the biggest fashion weeks also have an important economic impact in the cities where they are held in.
During these fashion weeks all types of apparels for men, women and children are launched starting from laundries, skirts, shirts, pants, t-shirts, suits etc. H&M, Walmart, C&A, Zara, GAP, Target, TESCO, Carrefour, Levi’s, JC Penny are the top fashion brands for whom Bangladeshi factories are manufacturing apparels.
Upcoming Fashion Weeks:
(*The dates are flexible, as often “surprise” shows appear a day early, or a day late.)