All the Ways COVID-19 Is Impacting the Global Fashion Industry
COVID-19 had spread across the world and, as of April 4, there are now reportedly 1,089,479 cases and 58,467 deaths around the world. For the global fashion industry, the virus impacted womenswear AW 2020 shows in New York, London, Milan and Paris, disrupting schedules and sending fashionistas fleeing. As a result of the worldwide attempt to slow the virus, designers are cancelling and rethinking their shows, which may lead to questions about the traditional fashion week format itself in the longterm. “In a time of crisis, we have to think about a radical reset,” Vogue editor Anna Wintour told The Times.
It’s not just runway shows either that have been impacted. Around the world, major events, including the Met Gala and the CFDA Awards, have also been postponed indefinitely. Tech conferences such as SXSW and music festivals, including the Ultra Music Festival and Coachella, Cannes Film Festival and the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, have also been postponed. Here are all the fashion-related events and manufacturing facilities that have so far been affected.
Beijing Fashion Week
Beijing’s China Fashion Week was scheduled to run from March 25 to March 31.
Cannes Film Festival
The Cannes Film Festival was scheduled for May 12 to 23. Organizers released a statement on Twitter on March 19, stating the festival may be postponed to the end of June and beginning of July this year.
“As soon as the development of the French and international health situation will allow us to assess the real possibility, we will make our decision known, in accordance with our ongoing consultation with the French government and Cannes’ City Hall as well as with the festival’s board members, film industry professionals and all the partners of the event”.
The Council of Fashion Designers of America Awards
The Council of Fashion Designers of America announced on March 18 it is cancelling its upcoming CFDA Awards, scheduled to be held at the New York Public Library on June 8.
The French design house announced on March 18 that it would be halting production in its facilities in Italy, France and Switzerland for the next two weeks, however, workers will still be paid.
California babes will be weeping into their flower crowns over the news that Coachella has postponed its annual, two-weekend music festival that had been scheduled from the weekends of April 10 and 17 to the weekends of Oct. 9 and 16.
Copenhagen Fashion Summit
The annual sustainability event released a statement confirming now postponed until October. “While this was certainly a difficult decision, we believe it is the only responsible and sensible thing to do, taking the global health uncertainties and authority recommendations into consideration. The health and safety of everyone on our team, including the numerous participants who come from across the globe to Copenhagen each May to convene and advance sustainability in fashion is our first priority”.
Gucci announced on March 12 that it will close its six manufacturing sites in Italy’s Tuscany and Marche regions through March 20 as the country continues to be devastated by COVID-19.
iD International Emerging Designer Awards
Uncertainty around international travel coupled with applicants from 17 countries prompted organisers of the iD International Emerging Designer Awards 2020 to move the show online.
Melbourne Fashion Festival
The Virgin Melbourne Fashion Festival, which began on March 4, cancelled the remainder of its programming on March 13.
“In the interest of the health and safety of our partners, participants, team, volunteers and patrons, the festival has made the decision to cancel all remaining events, effective immediately as a precautionary containment measure,” said event publicist, AMPR, in a statement.
Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia (MBFWA)
Australia Fashion Week’s 25th-anniversary edition has been cancelled. The event was scheduled from May 11 to 15 at Sydney’s Carriageworks venue.
Anna Wintour confirmed on March 16 that the Met Gala has been postponed from it’s scheduled May 4 date and no future date was offered.
“One day that will not arrive on schedule will be the opening of the Costume Institute’s exhibition, ‘About Time.’ Due to the unavoidable and responsible decision by the Metropolitan Museum to close its doors, ‘About Time,’ and the opening night gala, will be postponed to a later date,” she wrote in a piece penned for Vogue.com. “In the meantime, we will give you a preview of this extraordinary exhibition in our forthcoming May issue.”
Milan Fashion Week AW 2020
Giorgio Armani barred his AW 2020 runway show, opting instead to post a video of the show on the brand’s website and social media platforms.
Milan Men’s Fashion Week Spring 2021
Italy’s Camera Nazionale della Moda announced on March 27 that its Spring 2021 Milan Men’s Fashion Week will be postponed from June 19 to 23 and will now be presented during Milan Fashion Week from September 22 to 28.
New York Fashion Week Resort 2021 and Men’s Fashion Week
NYFW Resort 2021 is cancelled and that Men’s Fashion Week in June will be postponed.
New Zealand Fashion Week
NZFW announced the indefinite postponement of the 2020 event as a result of COVID-19.
“We want to make the right decision that supports the wonderful creative industry, designers and partners who are very close to us. Individually, many of them are hurting already — and I wish each one of them the best during this trying time,” said founder Dame Pietra Stewart.
Paris Men’s Fashion Week and Couture Week
The Fédération de la Haute Couture et de la Mode, French fashion’s governing body, is cancelling Paris Men’s Fashion Week from June 23 to 28 and Couture Week that was scheduled for July 5 to 9.
Paris Fashion Week AW 2020
Agnès B., A.P.C. and Rosie Assoulin all cancelled their shows. Chinese fashion brands Masha Ma, Shiatzy Chen, Uma Wang, Jarel Zhang, Calvin Luo and Maison Mai also cancelled their shows.
Resort 2021 Shows
A majority of design houses have cancelled their international resort 2021 runway shows, including Giorgio Armani, Chanel, Dior, Gucci, Hermès, Max Mara, Prada and Versace.
Sao Paolo Fashion Week
Sao Paolo Fashion Week has cancelled its spring 2020 edition, scheduled to run from April 24 to 28.
Shanghai Fashion Week
Shanghai Fashion Week was postponed from its scheduled March 26 date. However, organizers decided to partner with Tmall to move the event online, creating a virtual fashion week instead. More than 150 designers and brands live-streamed over 1,000 products from their newest collections and the garments were made available to more than 800 million monthly active users who visit Alibaba’s e-commerce sites. The event’s “See Now, Buy Now” format allowed viewers to purchase catwalk items and pre-order new looks from the fall collection in realtime via their smartphones.
The event’s organizers postponed the Stagecoach country music festival, originally scheduled for April 24 to 26 — for October 23 to 25.
Sustainable Future for Fashion Conference
The British Department for International Trade postponed the Sustainable Future for Fashion event, initially scheduled for February 28 in Paris.
Tokyo Fashion Week
It was revealed on March 2 that Tokyo Fashion Week, scheduled to run from March 16 to March 21, has been cancelled.
10 Best Dressed from the 2022 BAFTAs
The BAFTAs returned to London’s Royal Albert Hall on 13 March, attracting a slew of major stars ranging from Hollywood actresses to British supermodels — and there was no shortage of drama when it came to the coveted best-dressed category.
Daisy Edgar-Jones’ fringed, sparkly Gucci number caught our eye, while Lady Gaga oozed elegance in a green satin fishtail dress by Ralph Lauren, Naomi Campbell’s sleek black velvet Burberry gown was perhaps our favorite we’ve ever seen her in, and Lady Gaga’s green satin fishtail dress by Ralph Lauren oozed elegance.
Peep the 10 best looks in this video from Harper’s Bazaar.
Visionary Designer Virgil Abloh Dies Aged 41
Virgil Abloh, the visionary founder and CEO of Off-White and menswear designer for Louis Vuitton, died Sunday of cancer, according to a post from his verified Instagram account.
“We are devastated to announce the passing of our beloved Virgil Abloh, a fiercely devoted father, husband, son, brother, and friend. He is survived by his loving wife Shannon Abloh, his children Lowe Abloh and Grey Abloh, his sister Edwina Abloh, his parents Nee and Eunice Abloh, and numerous dear friends and colleagues. For over two years, Virgil valiantly battled a rare, aggressive form of cancer, cardiac angiosarcoma. He chose to endure his battle privately since his diagnosis in 2019, undergoing numerous challenging treatments, all while helming several significant institutions that span fashion, art, and culture. Through it all, his work ethic, infinite curiosity, and optimism never wavered,” the Instagram caption read. “Virgil was driven by his dedication to his craft and to his mission to open doors for others and create pathways for greater equality in art and design. He often said, “Everything I do is for the 17-year-old version of myself,” believing deeply in the power of art to inspire future generations.”
In a statement, Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy CEO Bernard Arnault said, “We are all shocked by this terrible news. Virgil was not only a genius designer and a visionary, he was also a man with a beautiful soul and great wisdom. The LVMH family joins me in this moment of great sorrow and we are all thinking of his loved ones on the passing of their husband, father, brother, son and friend.”
The 2021 Met Gala Red Carpet: Weird, Wonderful & Political
The Met Gala Red Carpet was rolled out on the steps of the Metropolitan Museum of Art after a year off due to Covid-19. There were multiple show-stopping outfits from Lil Nas X while Kim Kardashian and her estranged husband Kanye West turned heads by dressing entirely in black, even their faces.
Amid the glamour, some guests highlighted social issues. The Democratic congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez had ‘tax the rich’ written in red across the back of her white gown and the sports star Megan Rapinoe carried a clutch bag with the words ‘in gay we trust’.