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See Now, Buy Now, What Then?

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See Now, Buy Now, What Then?

Proenza Schouler joins the movement, with more brands on the way

BY KATHARINE K. ZARRELLA

NEWS  -  FEBRUARY 11

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Proenza Schouler Spring 2016 Ready-to-Wear; Photo: firstVIEW

This morning, Proenza Schouler announced that it’s jumping on the show-now-buy-now bandwagon. The brand, who, if you’ll remember, decided not to release images of its Pre-Fall 2016 collection until it hits stores this summer (it’s worth noting that Céline did the same), joins Burberry and Tom Ford, both of whom revealed that they’d be switching to a runway-to-consumer strategy last week. Word on the street is that more luxury houses will be announcing their embrace of this approach later in the week. 

Unlike Burberry and Ford, Proenza is only making a special Early Edition collection available after its February 17th show. The Business of Fashion reports that the range, which is set to include eight runway looks and four iterations of the Hava bag, will be available at 10 AM the morning of the 18th. The pieces in the capsule are being produced in limited quantities, and will be for sale in Proenza’s Greene Street store and online until February 22nd. 

This is all great for consumers, and more brands are sure to adapt given the heavy-hitters who have joined the fray thus far. But there are a lot of questions, many of which Fashion Unfiltered will address in the coming weeks. For starters, how will young designers keep up? After Creatures of the Wind’s standout show today, designer Shane Gabier told me it would be difficult for a small brand like Creatures, which places an emphasis on craft, to sustain such a swift cycle. “I think it poses a lot of challenges for brands our size,” he said. However, he suggested that he and co-designer Christopher Peters might explore offering accessory capsules off the runway in the future. “It’s an opportunity to think about how we can incorporate some component of [show-now-buy-now],” he added, noting that the vintage earrings featured in Fall 2016 could be great pieces to sell immediately on COTW’s Website. 

Another question that’s come up in several conversations already is what the hell are print publications going to do? How can they shoot collections for editorials if they’re going directly to stores? No one wants to see a dress in a magazine that’s been sold out for three weeks. Can fashion-focused print publications find an innovative way to survive the shift?

It’s an exciting, complicated time for fashion, and we’ll no doubt start to hear more about these queries and more as the shows unfold. 

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