From event cancelations to affected sales, the Coronavirus pandemic has drastically hit the Fashion industry with everyone from small businesses to large luxury retailers. The contagion has not only brought public life to a standstill but its impacts continue to generate economic losses.
In light of the above, a coalition of international designers and retailers have signed a petition for a completely new fashion calendar.
Led by Belgian designer Dries van Noten, the open letter to the Fashion industry which has been posted online at ForumLetter.org advocates for a calendar that is more sensible for consumers, brands, and stores and asks for a complete review of the system of manufacturing, distribution, and sale of clothing. This is based on the understanding that traditionally, the presentation of seasonal clothing was delayed by six months due to manufacturing delays. The letter also highlights the desire to curb sales and eliminate Black Friday, and to reduce fabric stocks to allow for more sustainable and less wasteful manufacturing.
According to the group, the current environment requires a change that will simplify businesses, making them more environmentally and socially sustainable and ultimately align them more closely with customers’ needs. This can be achieved by adjusting the seasonality and flow of both womenswear and menswear goods, starting with the Autumn/Winter 2020 season. The petition also says that the group will work to increase sustainability throughout the supply chain and sales calendar.
‘Working together, we hope these steps will allow our industry to become more responsible for our impact on our customers, on the planet and on the fashion community, and bring back the magic and creativity that has made fashion such an important part of our world,’ the letter states.
The open letter has been signed by more than 400 fashion professionals and counting. ‘Among the signatories are Giorgio Armani, Christian Louboutin, Tory Burch, Thom Browne, Carolina Herrera, Proenza Schouler, Marine Serre, Erdem Moralioglu, Gabriela Hearst, retailers such as Nordstrom, Bergdorf Goodman, Lane Crawford, Selfridges, and online retailer Mytheresa. However, the letter has not been signed by larger fashion houses such as Dior, Gucci, and Prada, which are part of large luxury conglomerates such as LVMH and Kering.