Browse all

All the weird things that happened during the last fashion weeks

This month's energy? Pure chaos

All the weird things that happened during the last fashion weeks This month's energy? Pure chaos

Fashion month has begun with fashion weeks in New York and London and things have been anything but quiet. Between videos spread on social media about the most frivolous and frustrating moments of an industry (the New York PR that went viral with the phrase «I am matching your volume») to the constant unveiling of new and unpleasant details involving everyone from the top designers of the big fashion houses to the independent creatives, making them both victims and executioners of a system that is now invincible and paradoxical, the prevailing feeling so far is that of a fashion month in which so many things are going wrong, revealing among other things some of the uglier sides of the fashion system. Are we really at a moment in history when the industry's less pleasant faces are revealing themselves from beneath the masks of politeness? Where press and public confidence in the fashion narrative is at an all-time low? But these two facts alone do not help to explain a moment in which, in general, the sense of things has begun to break down with the bombshell articles by the big editors in New York who have accused the system of creative exhaustion, have pointed out the contradictions of a system that seems to have short-circuited senses and meanings.

To give you an idea of the fact that this strange energy is definitely in the air, here are all the strange things that are happening during fashion week.

1. People leaving the J.W. Anderson show early


Guests leaving the JW Anderson show before it ends. Modeks are still walking!! And look who got up first.

original sound - cashonlyplease

A video released from the J.W. Anderson in London shows several editors, buyers, the Heartstopper actors and even Anna Wintour herself standing up, chatting and starting to leave while the show is still going on (presumably, in its final moments). This left many puzzled: is it not a sign of bad manners or, worse, disrespect to leave with models still on the catwalk? Especially since the show is that of J.W. Anderson, one of the most celebrated masters of the otherwise sparse London Fashion Week. Online, opinions were mixed: among those who condemned those who got up and left, others pointed out that the fashion week calendar now moves with an unspoken but systematic delay that forces the busy to sacrifice etiquette to practicality.

2. Mowalola's big Saudi mess

Mowalola's story was short but interesting. Hers was one of the most eagerly awaited shows, but as soon as the catwalk looks began, some people noticed that one of the mini-skirts worn by the models (which reproduced several national flags) also reproduced the flag of Saudi Arabia on which verses from the Koran were also displayed - something that the Muslim audience obviously took quite badly. When pointed out to them on Twitter, she answears with a callous «Cry me a river», which throws further petrol on the fire. At this point, faced with the chaos that promises to explode, the designer goes back to apologising, following the formula that we have heard a hundred times by now from a hundred different people and which has all the sincerity of a telephone scam. But things don't end there: on Twitter, some are beginning to wonder why the use of the image of Jesus Christ should not be considered as disrespectful as the use of Koranic verses, while others are beginning to doubt the designer's naivety given the thoroughness with which her cultural research is usually conducted. A small but notable debacle.

3. Elena Velez's mud machine

If months ago Elena Velez had become something of a heroine of indie fashion by revealing to The New York Times the immense difficulties behind the founding of a fashion brand, things changed when journalists stood in front of the designer's SS24 show in New York and saw a mud puddle where amateur (and unpaid) models were writhing in the muck in protest at «the sanitization and unilateralization of womanhood in popular culture», as Velez wrote in the notes. Faced with the spectacle, which nonetheless succeeded in its task of piercing the surface of media apathy and making people talk about itself, reactions were varied: many wondered how appropriate it was to stage such an unseemly scene, without paying the models and ruining the clothes, when one is famous for not having a budget; others lamented the presence of the media gimmick calling the whole thing a sham; still others revealed that there were influencers and similar figures in the front row to make a big deal out of it. There is a fine line between genius and bad taste but Elena Velez did not see it because of the mud-slinging. Nevertheless, in an anodyne fashion industry, one has to appreciate the existence of creatives who make us uncomfortable.

4. The Balmain truck robbery

In a new turn of events, Balmain's Olivier Rousteing announces on Instagram that the van he was transporting the looks for the upcoming SS24 collection that was due to show in Paris next week has been robbed in full Michael Mann's Heat style and that those looks are now probably for sale at some black market auction that stretches beneath the luxury industry like the catacombs stretch beneath Paris. The discouragement is great - and the event has shed as much light on the renewed interest and value that even crime attaches to fashion as it has on the rise of crime in Europe as it has on the true feelings of many editors about the Rousteing-led brand who on Twitter were not sparing with ironic comments about how little they cared about Balmain's show.

5. Dilara cancels her show

Two days after her show, one of London Fashion Week's most loved designers, Dilara Fındıkoğlu, announces that she has to cancel her show in order to use her budget more intelligently. A big theme of the season is back: expensive shows and independent designers having to give up the exposure and prestige of fashion week. But things are not one-sided: the media attention given to Dilara also ends up bringing to the surface the controversy surrounding the less than serene working environment that the designer maintained within the brand between payments that never arrived, unpaid overtime and verbal abuse left and right. There are really no good characters this month.

6. I furti nello studio di Prada

Last, and perhaps most striking, is that of the Prada cleaner who, under the cover of night, made garments worth €300,000 disappear from the brand's design studio. The move is unbelievably clever since, as they are prototypes and archive garments, their absence is soon noticed and, when they appear on Vinted with lots of alphanumeric archive codes, finding the thief and her two accomplices (her daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law) who were laundering the stolen goods was easy. No less: crime, like a kind of mould, has indeed infiltrated everywhere.