For the first time in a decade, Karen Walker has decided not to show at New York Fashion week amidst changing consumer habits and technological advancements. Walker explained how the industry had changed and that the event no longer held as much weight as an advertising tool.
She said social media has allowed consumers to see the garments the moment they are shown on the runway, but then have to wait six months before being able to buy them.
“The paradigms have shifted for the industry regarding the way people consume and engage. When the paradigm shifts, everyone goes back to zero and builds from the ground up what’s right for them,” said Walker.
Walker explained how consumers are no longer looking at an outfit as a whole, rather, they are more engaged with individual products.
The shift away from fashion shows is not exclusive to New York Fashion Week, however, with the brand moving to produce smaller, more frequent capsule collections and increasing its social media presence.
“I’ve become more interested in wrestling the timeline back from the system: of challenging the time allowed to develop a product, the time allowed for it to exist on the shop floor before the red marker comes out, and the time the customer allows it to live in their wardrobe.”