As fashion weeks are drawing to an end, everyone involved seem to take a rest and look back at weeks full of runway shows with stunning clothes, collection reviews summarising and celebrating, meeting friends and people in the industry, discussing how the business is going, following street style looks and what everyone is wearing, while all the time having kept up with the analogue world on social media. Parties, models, guest lists, front row, delays and trying to hail a taxi – now all that is behind us, and there’s at least a month before a smaller version of all the buzz will kick in again with the pre-fall collections. It’s time to take a rest, as the frenzy leaves the body, and somehow make sense of all the impressions, and summarise collections from four corners of the world into what will be the key trends. This is important for everyone in the industry from buyers to designers, as well as PR, trend forecasters, and textile mills. But what happens after fashion week?
- The Sales team will work in the showroom (mono- or multi-brand) with selling the collection that was just on the catwalk. They have been briefed with a ‘Collection Education’ so they know everything about the collection and the individual garments.
- The Retail Buyers place their orders in the showrooms, and plan what they will sell in their store for the ss16 collection, which will be delivered in January/February.
- The Showroom models work for the coming weeks in the showrooms presenting the collection by wearing it.
- In a couple of weeks time, the Production team will collect all the orders from the showroom, and start placing orders for fabrics, trimmings, size grading, and manufacturing.
- The Designers go on to working on the next collection straight away, and sometimes they will already have another collection under development, such as pre-fall or a flash collection. Often a new collection start with the fabric fairs, and they are just around the corner. Inspiration trips, art exhibitions as well as flea markets are other ways to start a new collection, as well as taking inspiration from the past collections of other brands.
- The Product Manager will collaborate with the designer, and link the sales review with the planning of the next collection. It’s an increasingly important position, as it optimises products and sales.
- The Production team will place the orders for the sample collection, as soon as directions are given from the design team.
- The brand’s Retail team will plan for having everything ready on the brand’s webpage, when the collection will hit the stores (online and offline) in Jan/Feb.
- The Magazines will start planning next seasons photo shoots and editorials with their in-house teams.
- The PR agencies will start receiving requests for the garments for editorials done by magazines.
- The Runway models will have a break from the catwalk, and do editorials and ads.
- Manufacturers of textiles and trimmings will start planning on new articles to develop. Sometimes the lead time is so long that new ideas can’t be implemented in the coming collection, but then it will be for the one following.
The fashion industry is a billion dollar one, and though it’s the fashion weeks that get the most press, a lot of work goes on behind the scene in what happens after fashion week, so the collections will be available in the shops and reworked in interesting editorials in the magazines. Above are mentioned some of the key profiles, but a huge number of photographers, stylists, artist, journalists, illustrators, brand ambassadors, celebrities, philanthropists, pattern cutters, tailors, seamstresses, strategists, business analysts, trend forecasters, IT-girls, bloggers, and many more contribute to the intricate business of fashion all year around. There are many other jobs than being a designer, which is just one of them. And while it seems like a lot of fun being a designer, which is also really is, it’s also a lot of very hard work as in most other businesses. It’s a work of passion, dedication, and being able to tackle the fact that you can rarely take time off.
Cover photo is from Opera Gallery, Paris.