Everyone knows that Paris Fashion Week is the cherry on the fashion pie. It is the last of the ‘Fashion Four’ but definitely not the least important. Rather the other way around, actually, and one knows that Paris matters more than New York, London and Milan. This is perhaps too strong of a statement, and depends a lot on what kind of a designer you are, but if you do well in Paris, you will be just fine anywhere else. As a result, with such a level of responsibility, you can imagine how busy Paris is, and how hard it is for the new designers without world-known names to get into the fashion week schedule and present their collections in the dream city. So what are the options at Paris Fashion Week for new designers?
I would like to make clear right away that I am not even going to mention “having a show in Paris”, because this is not something available for the new generation of upcoming designers, who are only at the beginning of their careers. Not only it is very expensive and difficult to organize, it is also not very effective. The truth is that the chances are high that the right people will not come to your show the first time – especially if you are doing something on your own. However, if you choose the right place, get the timing right, as well as the right way of presenting your designs, magical things can happen. But where is this place? And what is the right timing?
A very good solution comes in the shapes of a showroom or a trade show. Over the last years, quite a few of them have been actively growing and getting more and more attention. A showroom is usually smaller, and you just get a rale or a couple of them, and sometimes maybe a mannequin or models, which depends on the level of organization. Trade shows are usually held at huge locations, where you get a booth or a stand, so the number of the participators is higher, but you will have to pay a lot of attention to inviting people yourself and promoting your presence there because of the competition.
You should know that in both cases not anyone can get in and exhibit, and therefore you do need to contact the organizers in advance, and prove that you are interesting enough for their platform. Also, before doing this, have a look at what kind of visitors attend the various places, and maybe talk to the designers, who have participated in the previous years. The more information you have – the better, as participation is not cheap. If you come from abroad, do not forget that you also need to buy plane tickets, pay for accommodation etc., and you do not want to waste your money.
Benext – is organized by Georgian fashion influencer Sofia Tchkonia, who “was looking for eclecticism and richness” and “has found the right balance between commercialism and creativity”. At first, the project concentrated on Georgian designers, but now you can also find Ukrainian, Russian and even Italian ones. An extra bonus about Benext is that you can find everything from ready-to-wear and jewelry design to handmade bags and accessory lines.
- When: from the 2nd till the 5th of October.
- Where: 5, rue du Grenier Saint Lazare.
Capsule – is a “brainchild of fashion consultancy BPMW launched to develop a global network of like-minded people who conceptualize, create, desire, and buy the clothes that epitomize a new vision of forward progress”. It is a very big American platform that has 10 events per year in three cities. The list of the participators, and those who support the project is impressive, as well as the media coverage.
- When: from the 2nd till the 4th of October.
- Where: 67, rue du Faubourg Saint-Martin.
Fashion Scout – is a platform that has been around for a while, or 19 seasons already to be precise. It is based in London, but also has a showcase in Paris and Kiev. “The Fashion Scout Paris showroom presents an industry curated selection of the brightest design talent from around the world”. Among those designers whose careers really took off after participation in Fashion Scout are Felder Felder, David Koma, and Peter Pilotto.
- When: From the 1st till the 6th of October.
- Where: 78, rue Amelot.
More Dash – Ukrainian project that has gained extensively in importance the last seasons. Having Anna Wintour at your cocktail is a VERY big deal, you know. This season the showroom changed the location for a bigger space and scouted more designers than before. More Dash has a mission and it is “to introduce, curate, support and empower upcoming designers and brands and to bring their creativity to the best stores of the world, whose customers will just fall in love with”.
- When: from the 30th of September till the 7th of October.
- Where: 21, rue du Bourg Tibourg.
Premiere Classe – is a tradeshow devoted to accessories. “An artistic interchange, decoding trends and defending artisanal know-how, PREMIERE CLASSE always discovers new talent, gathering together the best of fashion accessories”. Therefore, if you are designing any kind of accessories it is exactly the place to be. Premiere Classe will take place at two different locations this year.
- When: from the 2nd till the 5th of October.
- Where: Jardin des Tuileries (Terrasse des Feuillants) and Pavillon Cambon (46, rue Cambon).
Tranoi – “an artistic platform with a stern selection of more than 1000 premium designers from all over the world, created for them to meet the most influential fashion ambassadors”. A great variety of artistic installations, designer exhibitions, and catwalk shows are available for the visitors. Believe me: the scale of this event will definitely impress you! One tip: Tranoi has its own application, which you can download in the App Store for a more convenient experience.
- When: From the 2nd till the 5th of October.
- Where: Carrousel du Louvre, Montaigne, Palais de la Bourse.
So, as you can see having your own show is not “a must” in regards to Paris Fashion Week for new designers. Luckily, today you have a great variety of options and opportunities, and you should definitely consider them and aim for them. Paris Fashion Week is starting today, so if you are considering participating there next season, it is the perfect timing to go and see the places yourself, and choose which platform suits you and your brand the most. Make sure you check the official website and contact the organizers before, so that they will expect you to come. And good luck with taking over the world!
All images are from Google search.