London Fashion Week to go digital only amid global pandemic

London Fashion Week to go digital only amid global pandemic
Burberry Spring 2020 ready-to-wear collection. (AFP)
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Updated 21 April 2020

London Fashion Week to go digital only amid global pandemic

London Fashion Week to go digital only amid global pandemic

DUBAI: On Tuesday, the British Fashion Council announced a new version of London Fashion Week will occur during the previously scheduled dates for Men’s London Fashion Week, set to take place from June 12-14, 2020.

Instead of physical shows, this year’s edition of London Fashion Week will be entirely digital, with the content rolling out on londonfashionweek.co.uk. Additionally, the womenswear and menswear shows will be merged, organizers announced. 

“By creating a cultural fashion week platform, we are adapting digital innovation to best fit our needs today and something to build on as a global showcase for the future,” Caroline Rush, the chief executive of the British Fashion Council, said in a release. “Designers will be able to share their stories, and for those that have them, their collections, with a wider global community; we hope that as well as personal perspectives on this difficult time, there will be inspiration in bucket-loads. It is what British fashion is known for.”

The LFW digital platform will contain virtual showrooms, designer interviews and even podcasts. 

“It is essential to look at the future and the opportunity to change, collaborate and innovate,” Rush also said. “Many of our businesses have always embraced London Fashion Week as a platform for not just fashion but for its influence on society, identity, and culture. The current pandemic is leading us all to reflect more poignantly on the society we live in and how we want to live our lives and build businesses when we get through this. The other side of this crisis, we hope will be about sustainability, creativity, and product that you value, respect, cherish.”

The coronavirus pandemic has wreaked havoc on the typically jam-packed fashion calendar, throwing it into major disarray as nations worldwide go into lockdown in a bid to curb the spread of the infectious disease.

In March, it was announced that fashion weeks in London, Paris and Milan would be canceled or postponed. Key fashion events like the Met Gala and the LVMH Prize for Young Fashion Designers have also been halted. 

LFW follows the lead of fashion weeks in Shanghai and Moscow that have taken place online due to coronavirus restrictions. In March, Tokyo opted to livestream its fashion shows. That said, London will be the first city on the major fashion circuit to adopt a digital-only model.