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CFDA Holds Town Hall Meeting to Discuss the Fashion System

Should Fashion Shows Be Targeted Toward Consumers or the Industry?

Last night, the CFDA gathered around the stone at a town meeting where industry leaders discussed the future of the fashion industry. The debate was whether fashion shows should be targeted towards consumers or the industry. “We design for the consumer, and right now, I believe the consumer is completely confused,” said Donna Karan. Basically, who is going to purchase a wool coat — even if it's the most amazing coat ever — in August? That said, designers faulted the recession, discount-driven shoppers, the vast difference between runway looks and in-store merchandise, and the constant pumping out of collection after collection.

“We should truly focus on the problem and the solution. The consumer has been trained to buy on sale. The clothes in stores are not in season, so she is confused. Why should she go out and spend money early in the season, when in fact come September and October, when the season actually changes, the next season is there and it’s called resort? We are putting all the energy into something that the consumer isn’t really getting, because by then it’s on sale,” continued Karan. On a sillier note, Anna Wintour, suggested putting together a committee that could create rules for when stores could discount merchandise stating, "We have friends in the White House now.” That's most likely not going to happen but the issue remains, should the fashion industry cater towards the consumers or the industry?

Image Sources: WireImage and Getty
iwontfadeout iwontfadeout 8 years
A little of both.
agentnikita95 agentnikita95 8 years
In the rare instances that an American Vogue issue actually interests me, my distaste for Anna Wintour always outweighs any temptation to fork down the cash. As for the fashion shows: I love the couture shows -- it's an artform for me. But for everything else, it's really stupid to put on fall shows when we're just barely entering summer. But it works for my wallet. Having so much time between the the time that runway photos are posted all over the internet, to the time they're available for sale, gives enough time for me to get bored of the item. And, if I'm still interested, I usually can find a similar, or updated version for less by the time the items come out.
grlykool grlykool 8 years
The consumer is the industry and the industry has forgotten that. OH and I agree most things (even high end clothing) is so poorly made. Besides people are into having individual styles.
Michaelrcks Michaelrcks 8 years
The industry!
heyxu heyxu 8 years
The problem is that the people the fashion shows are marketing to isn't enough people/money to actually help the lagging fashion industry, otherwise they wouldn't be holding this meeting. The way the system is now is obviously not working; it relies too much on the economy doing well. What Wintour said was ridiculuous, it's called anti-monopoly law. This "lets not change anything ourselves, but force others to accommodate what we want" type of thinking is what is causing them problems.
superninja superninja 8 years
Put your clothing on sale, or go the way of the Dodo. First of all, most of the clothing is so poorly made now, that it's not even worth the sale price. Second, couture and ready to wear are still out of the price range ON SALE of 85% of the population. Anna must be annoying that the ladies who lunch on 5th Avenue are shopping the sale rack right now.
superninja superninja 8 years
Gross overregulation, just what the fashion industry needs! These people are so dumb.
dootsie dootsie 8 years
For the consumer--the real, walks-down-the-street consumer, Fashion shows are just a blip on the radar. They're a preview of what will be in stores come early fall. For the people a fashion show markets to, fashion shows HAVE to happen when they do. Set the tone for the season before it happens. But for the end-product consumer? As long as stuff shows up on store shelves, whatever.
mommie mommie 8 years
I doubt legislatures would find a law to say when sales can occur worth the time. We have much more pressing items on the agenda for the country - like health care and look how hard that one is. Been trying that one for 60 years already.
db849 db849 8 years
I'm so used to when things come out already...I buy what I like when I see it. The industry is always ahead of the game...gets you thinking about summer when it's raining outside, which is nice to think that warm weather is around the corner. However, it would be nice to be able to buy an umbrella in said rainy season.
tiabia tiabia 8 years
I know that I am actually shopping for the next season, and as GlamSugar said if I find something that I like, I'm just going to get it no matter the season.
myystque myystque 8 years
Yeah, I can't believe someone actually thinks they can get a law passed restricting when a store can discount merchandise. How ridiculous. And I agree with glam sugar. If I find something nice on sale, I'll buy it regardless of the season. However, I've often lamented how the industry doesn't follow actual seasons. It's weird.
syako syako 8 years
Anna Wintour, suggested putting together a committee that could create rules for when stores could discount merchandise stating, "We have friends in the White House now.” :headsmack: Did she really say that? Out loud? Gah.
glam-sugar glam-sugar 8 years
I actually did buy a fabulous wool coat last August. If I find something I like, it doesn't matter if it's in season or not, I buy it. That said, I think there should be a better balance between catering to the consumer and the industry.
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