History: Fashion Weeks
Fashion Weeks are the main and most glamorous events for the Fashion industry! On this occasion, brands, houses, and independent designers present their newest collection.
The 4 major Fashion Weeks are held in Milan, Paris, New York, and London. Of course, there are many other cities that organize such an event, but the importance in terms of designer and houses presenting, influx, press, and buyers’ coverage is not comparable to the “Big Four” fashion weeks, mentioned at the beginning.
Paris, middle Eighteen Hundred: there and then was born the idea of organizing fashion events to sponsor designers and their new collection releases. In the beginning, these events were private and open only to the wealthy and higher class of Paris.
In less than fifty years this type of event started being popular in New York City and, in 1903, the American shop Ehrich Brothers organized the first fashion runway inside his store, presenting its collection in public. Quickly many other department stores started organizing runways, seeing their potentiality in increasing their business and their popularity in both the wealthy and the working classes. By the 1950s, these events became very popular and spread through all the country, gathering every time thousands of audience.
It was in 1943 that took place the first-ever “fashion week” in history, in NYC.
As often happens, new things come about as a result of a need. During War World II, the trips and communication between the USA and France became difficult and rare. For this reason, in order to provide to the American buyer’s valid alternatives to the French brands, the first fashion week was organized.
Enough of history for today, check out the main fashion events in today’s fashion scenario.
Today’s Fashion Weeks
Today’s Fashion Weeks have so much more going on than just the fashion runways. They are now the scenario of many different events such as Conferences, Meetings, Parades, Parties, Performances, Work-Shops, and much more!
Fashion weeks are held twice a year with the aim to present the two main collections of the year the Fall/Winter in February and the Spring/Summer in September.
During these fashion events, of course, the collection presented are for the future year.
Collections are shown so early because, after the collection presentation
- Buyers review the collections and select their favorite pieces
- Brands need time to manufacture and ship the orders
- Magazines need to organize photo shooting and prepare the editorials
The above reasons explain why the garments are presented months before their arrival in the stores.
Where: New York, London, Milan, and Paris. These are the “Big Four” Fashion Weeks in today’s fashion scenario.
When: Fashion weeks are held 2 times per year in every City. It’s always New York that opens the season followed by London, Milano, and Paris.
Who: Designers from all over the world can apply and present their collection at any fashion week – if they fall within the established parameters and are accepted by the FWs’ organizers.
Apart from the Designers and their trusted team, Fashion Weeks gather many different professional figures, all of them specialized in fashion, such as journalists, photographers, fashion bloggers, models, hair and make-up stylists, PR, buyers, and much more.
NEW YORK: Fizzy, Modern, and Certainly New
Even though the runway concept was conceived in Paris, it was the New Yorkers that organized the first fashion week in 1943, under the name of “Press Week”. It was just in 1993 that the Council of Fashion Designer of America changed its name to New York Fashion Week. The event was branded with the trademark “7th on Sixth”.
Since its debut, the NYFW has been an unmissable event and ensured its spot into the “Big Four”, together with Paris, Milan, and London.
New York always opens the fashion week calendar, followed by London, Milan, and Paris.
Where: Nowadays, the majority of the shows take place at Spring Studios, 6 St. Johns Lane, in TriBeCa. That being said, it needs to be kept in mind that some designers might choose a more original spot in NYC to present its collection and therefore, not all shows are held in the same venue. You may want to check all the complementary and secondary events that are spread all over New York City, with a dense list of open-to-the-public appointments and installations.
When: Lasting between 7 and 9 days, NYFW regularly takes place in February and September, year after year.
Who: Check here the designers participating in NYFW!
Tickets?: Good luck with those! Tickets for the runways are mainly on-invitation, and practically just celebs get to attend. Our suggestion is, instead of settling for a seat in the last row, from which you’ll only have a view on the screen cell phones’ of the people in front of you, opt for following the shows in broadcast, comfortably seated on your couch, eating pizza, with your BFF : )
If you are planning to travel to New York on the occasion of Fashion Week I suggest you book flights and hotels asap, to save money and because it’s a really busy time of the year!
To stay on track with all events related to NYFW, and not only, do not forget to check the following websites:
LONDON: Edgy, Eccentric, and Avant-garde
London Fashion Week was founded by the British Fashion Council (BFC) in October 1983.
As the title anticipates, this Fashion Week is characterized by its avant-guard and the aim to open its doors to everyone and make the event less elitist.
For this reason
- The London Fashion Week Festival (LFWF) was instituted, a 4 days event, which is mainly retail-oriented, it’s held right after the LFW.
- February 2010: LFW was the first to broadcast all Runways and the main shows on the internet in real-time.
- September 2019: the BFC created a twin event to the LFW, called City-Wide Celebration, which can be seen as an extension of the LFW with the aim to involve a larger number of people. Anyone can attend this new manifestation, both as an “exhibitor” and as a visitor.
Noteworthy is also the initiative of being the first FW event to be fur-free, since September 2018.
Find below more details on the LFW!
Where: LFW’s main events normally take place at the BFC’s own show space, The Store X, or at other locations all around London.
When: It lasts from 6 to 7 days, and regularly takes place in February and September, year after year.
Who: Check the list of all the designers participating in LFW.
MILAN: Chic, Popular, and 100% Italian
Milan Fashion Week (MFW) is the most important fashion event in Italy. It was founded in 1958 by the Camera del Commercio Italiana (CNIM).
It’s the third fashion week, chronologically speaking, after New York and London’s ones.
MFW can be mainly divided into two: MFW-Woman and MFW-Man.
The major events on the Women’s side are Womenswear, Milan SS Women Ready to Wear and Milano Moda Donna.
While the major events on the Men’s side are Menswear, and Milano Moda Uomo.
There is so much going on during Milano Fashion Week that we suggest you wear comfortable shoes and get ready to run all over town 🙂
When: MFW-Woman regularly takes place every year in February/March and September/October and lasts 6 to 7 days.
MFW-Man regularly takes place every year in January and June and lasts 4 to 5 days.
To stay on track with all events related to MFW, and not only, do not forget to check the following websites:
PARIS: Timeless, Elegant, and Unbeatable
Paris closes, always with a flourish, the fashion weeks’ tour and it’s the last stop, for us fashion addicted.
Paris Fashion Week (PFW) was established in 1973 under the Fédération Française de la Couture, du Prêt-à-Porter des Couturiers et des Créateurs de Mode, and includes 3 main categories Prêt-à-Porter, Haute Couture, and Men’s Fashion (listed in chronological order).
Differently from the other 3 fashion week, Paris is the only one in which the Haute Couture défilés are held, making PFW by far the most prestigious fashion event in the world!
It is well known that Parisians are always elegant and fashionable, but it’s during the PFW that the best outfits are flaunted! In case you’d like to visit the next biggest fashion event in the “Capitale de la Mode” find out about all the fundamental details below.
Where: The PFW shows are held all over the city of Paris. Visit this page to review the schedule of all events.
- PFW-Prêt-à-Porter regularly takes place twice per year in February/March and September/October and lasts 9 days.
- PFW-Haute Couture is also held two times per year, in January and July and normally lasts 4 to 5 days.
- Lastly, PFW-Men’s Fashion is held in January and June.
Who: Check this link to discover all the designers participating in Paris Fashion Week!
To stay on track with all events related to PFW, and not only, do not forget to check the following websites: