Switch UpAs the year of fashion musical chairs draws to a close, this season will see a number of recently appointed creative directors show their debut collections for their new houses. Saint Laurent’s Anthony Vaccarello (who was named as Hedi Slimane’s successor in April) will show the much-anticipated fruits of his first few months at the fashion house, as will Maria Grazia Chiuri for Dior following her appointment in July. This will be a season of firsts for Grazia Chiuri, as she is the only woman to ever take the helm at the French label and it will also be the first collection that she will show without her long-term design partner Pierpaulo Piccioli (who will present his first solo vision for Valentino.) Lanvin’s show this season will be led by new creative director Bouchra Jarrar, who replaced Alber Elbaz at the house after he was controversially ousted last year.
The Waiting GameSome confirmed debuts will keep us holding on a little longer than others – Calvin Klein is showing a small presentation by its in-house design team ahead of Raf Simons unveiling his first collection in February, while Diane von Furstenberg, who appointed Jonathan Saunders as creative director in May, will be holding private appointments only. Although it recently named Laura Kim and Fernando Garcia as co-creative directors, Oscar de la Renta had its in-house team finish its spring/summer 2017 collection following Peter Copping’s departure, so the fashion world will also have to wait until next year for their offering. And, while Versus Versace remains on the schedule this season, it will be without the leadership of Anthony Vacarello whose replacement is yet to be announced.
Who's Missing?A few favourites are missing from the roster all together, such as Vetements and Public School who have opted to show in January and June (normally reserved for pre and resort) rather than February and September in order to align more closely with when the collections will actually hit shops. Vivienne Westwood has also taken herself off the schedule, as she confirmed plans last month to show her menswear and womenswear lines together in January.
See-Now, Buy-NowAnswering the adage, “When do we want it? Now!”, the hot topic of the industry of late is the dramatic shift towards see-now, buy-now – the new fashion-show model in which brands make the collections available to buy straight from the catwalk. Burberry, Tom Ford, Tommy Hilfiger, and Topshop are among those that will adopt it this month, with special plans in place – such as the latter’s pop-up market stall outside its East London venue – to mark the change. Thakoon will return this season, following a hiatus in February, to adopt the new format, whilst Michael Kors and Prada will be selling capsule collections of accessories from their runways after the shows.
X + YSee-now, buy-now is not the only transformation that some brands are undertaking this season – Tom Ford, Burberry, Rag & Bone and Bottega Veneta are also opting to present their menswear and womenswear collections together, as opposed to separating them into the usually distinct single-sex fashion weeks.
ShowstoppersTommy Hilfiger’s show is receiving one of the biggest buzzes of the season thanks to its fairground theme – 40-foot ferris wheel and all – on New York’s South Street Seaport. Its collaborative collection, Tommy X Gigi, makes its runway debut as it becomes available to buy immediately, following the online preview last month. Elsewhere, Burberry bids farewell to its Kensington Gardens base, moving to Soho’s Makers House where, during the week of the show, a selection of craftsmen will showcase installations inspired by the collection, while Topshop will set up home at the East London landmark Old Spitalfields Market, appropriately hosting pop-up stalls so that the collection can be snapped up as soon as the finale finishes. Proving that they are well and truly adopting the consumer-facing model, these brands are making parts of their presentations or show spaces open to the public. As ever, the usual runway extravaganzas can also be expected from the likes of Dolce & Gabbana, Dsquared2 and Versus Versace.
Pastures Old And NewContinuing the season shake-ups, there are plenty of time and venue moves going on – Giorgio Armani is taking Emporio to Paris, though his eponymous brand will remain on the Milan schedule (in the Sunday slot usually filled by Emporio); Ralph Lauren, Anya Hindmarch and Marc Jacobs are among the fashion houses taking up new time slots – the latter of whom, like Burberry, says goodbye to its longtime Park Avenue base to show at the Hammerstein Ballroom. However, there are some returns to former pastures - Alexander McQueen’s show is in Paris again this season, having had a temporary slot in London in February; Tom Ford is back in New York; and Versus Versace and MM6 Maison Margiela return to the London line-up.
In With The NewAs well as a few familiar faces coming back, there are a host of new names to get excited about this September. Molly Goddard – who Rihanna thrust to global prominence when she stepped out in the designer’s acid-green tulle dress earlier this year – makes her solo runway debut, as do Huishan Zhang and Teatum Jones. At Fashion East, rising star Matty Bovan has been added to the existing line-up of Richard Malone, Mimi Wade and AV Robertson. Meanwhile, Frankfurt-born Paula Knorr’s glamorous aesthetic has won her a place on the Newgen roster for this season.