- London Fashion Week is historically a quarterly event divided into men’s and women’s weeks for specific seasons.
- The event has been hosted by the British Fashion Council (BFC) since 1984.
- What was originally supposed to be London Fashion Week Men’s in June will now be a digital and gender-neutral event.
- London Fashion Week in September will also be gender-neutral, allowing menswear, womenswear, and gender-free designers to showcase their styles together, a BFC representative confirmed to Vogue.
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For the first time in nearly 40 years, London Fashion Week will be digital and will include womenswear, menswear, and gender-neutral fashion labels.
Due to the coronavirus outbreak, which has caused the Olympics to be postponed and countless cultural events to be put on hold,London Fashion Week will be a virtual event held from June 12 through June 14, according to a press release obtained by Vogue.
Designers are invited to showcase fashions through lookbooks, online showrooms, videos, podcasts, and other digital exhibits, the statement said.
London Fashion Week has been held since 1984 and is historically held for menswear and womenswear designers separately
The fashion week has been hosted by the British Fashion Council (BFC) since 1984 and is held on a quarterly basis, with events for each season and divided by menswear and womenswear.
This year, London Fashion Week will be gender-neutral. According to a statement published by ELLE, the BFC defines this as allowing womenswear, menswear, and gender-free design labels to participate in the same week of fashion events together for the first time.
London’s fashion week in June, as well as the previously scheduled September event, will include menswear, womenswear, and gender-free designs, a BFC representative confirmed to Vogue.
Traditionally, both London Fashion Week and New York Fashion Week have stuck to reserving separate events for men’s and women’s fashions. In 2018, the Council of Fashion Designers (CFDA) in the US added a “unsiex/nonbinary” category to New York Fashion Week to include designers who make clothes without labelling them as being for women or men.
“It is essential to look at the future and the opportunity to change, collaborate and innovate,” British Fashion Council Chief Executive Caroline Rush said in a statement published by ELLE.
“Many of our businesses have always embraced London Fashion Week as a platform for not just fashion, but for its influence on society, identity, and culture,” Rush continued. “The current pandemic is leading us all to reflect more poignantly on the society we live in and how we want to live our lives and build businesses when we get through this.”
In her statement, Rush added that the positive side to having a digital event may make the fashion community more accessible to the masses.
“Designers will be able to share their stories, and for those that have them, their collections, with a wider global community; we hope that as well as personal perspectives on this difficult time, there will be inspiration in bucketloads. It is what British fashion is known for,” Rush said.
The BFC isn’t the first global fashion authority to experiment with virtual runway shows or exhibits. Shanghai Fashion Week, which was held from March 24 to March 30, was the world’s first completely digital fashion week. Earlier in March, Tokyo Fashion Week was held in the form of livestreamed videos, where designers showcased their collections for Fall 2020.
Representatives of the British Fashion Council did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
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