LFW goes online AND gender-neutral?!

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This week organisers decided that London Fashion Week 2020, will be taking place on a digital platform due to the situation we’ve all found ourselves in. Not only that, but what would typically be men’s fashion week in June, has been made a gender-neutral platform where designers can create a mixed show, similar to the likes of Burberry and Gucci. The CEO of the British Fashion Council, Caroline Rush said, “By creating a cultural fashion week platform, we are adapting digital innovation to best fit our needs today and enacting something to build on as a global showcase for the future. The other side of this crisis, we hope, will be about sustainability, creativity and product that you value, respect, cherish.”

So what does this mean? The event plans to have a lot of media attached to it with interviews taking place online as well as digital showrooms. These will be open to the public, so for the first time many people will be able to experience fashion week, even if it’s through the comfort of their homes. With so many fashion weeks being cancelled around the world and events such as the MET gala being put on a halt, this is certainly an innovative way to keep the industry connected through the pandemic. As a concept, I personally love this idea! I spoke previously about whether fashion week was really necessary and if it was sustainable, considering the world we live in today. I think a positive we can take from the pandemic is an element like this. A digital platform which provides the same information to an audience, potentially a larger audience, and cuts out the unnecessary waste and carbon emissions, that would typically come with it. There is no need for anybody to fly anywhere or purchase any new garments to wear because you can sit at home with a cuppa tea watching LFW in your pyjamas!

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The whole gender-neutral aspect I think is so crucial in 2020. I was always in favour of brands just showing their collection once for everybody because that’s the truth- clothes are for anybody and we shouldn’t be defined by a jacket being labelled ‘male’ and some trousers being labelled ‘female’. Also, I think it’ll help to target the non-binary community where currently they are still restricted to clothes being sold in gender categories. I’m hoping that this positive change may potentially continue after this situation and that brands will follow in the likes of Tommy Hilfiger.

All in all, I think this has been the best news I’ve heard all week and it is definitely a step in the right direction, even though it was a consequence of a negative situation. Hopefully, it will also mean that more products will be sold by brands who may not typically have major celebrities and social influencers attending but more for the garment itself!- another big issue within itself!

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