Is Fashion Week Really Worth It?


Now that every last stiletto heel has been sanded down and Karl Lagerfeld has been returned to his special, protective crate, Fashion Week is officially over in NY. But was all the glitz and glamour money well spent? That’s the question asked by FoxBusinessCornelia Rowe, who interviewed designers that held both massive and tiny events. The ultimate conclusion: yes, it was. But wouldn’t you also kind of feel obligated to say that to a reporter if you just dumped half a million dollars into a fifteen minute show? Because who is going to say, “My God! What have I done! The company is going to skin me alive and sell my epidermis as a coat in a fashionable SoHo boutique!” Okay, probably no one is every going to say that, but wouldn’t you love to read it, just once? Here’s some:

Then, there’s financial return on the investment. A strong collection often translates into more dollars when it resonates with buyers for department stores and boutiques. Following Fashion Week, Market Week begins. This is where the real business of fashion starts, when buyers — fresh off viewing the runway collections and taking notes — will individually designers’ showrooms and decide what will make it to their store racks.

“If [a show] hits, the money is well-spent and frankly, priceless,” said [NPD’s Marshal Cohen]. “Buyers rarely buy at shows, but they do raise the commitment if a show is well-received. Sometimes as much as 20% more open to buy can be spent if the designer gets a glowing review or the buyers feel the product connected.”