With the fashion industry currently in controversy surrounding the clashing of show dates for A/W 12, a new question has arisen, ‘Would it actually be such a bad thing if designers in Milan had to show head to head with those in New York and London?
Over the last couple of weeks letters from fashion authorities on both sides have been traded back and forth on how to sort out the overlap, with Mario Boselli, the president of the Camera Nazionale della Moda in Milan, to openly declare, “Let the best one win.”
As it stands, Milan Fashion Week would overlap with the last two days of New York Fashion Week and the entirety of London Fashion Week. So now editors, stylists, buyers alike will have to choose where they are to attend.
However with the exhausting rollercoaster of more and more fashion shows and presentations per season, it might be a welcome relief to drop a city. It must be remembered that the status of the fashion cities has been cyclical itself; Paris has ruled fashion since the mid-19th century, and the American collections did not come into any prominence until World War II. New York only came into equal weight with Paris and Milan after its designers decided, in 1998, to show before the European collections instead of after.
However beyond this, Diane Von Furstenberg, President of the Council of Fashion Designers of America, argued the four leading capitals should at this point consider themselves as a cohesive fashion season, rather than as competitors. She has proposed to Mr. Boselli that New York “bite the bullet” next year and move its dates earlier, in exchange for a formal agreement about 2013 and beyond. (Mr. Boselli is taking the proposal to his members.) “We have to protect the industry,” Ms. Von Furstenberg said. “To give jobs is the No. 1 responsibility for anyone today, and that’s what we have to realize.”
Photos: Mercedes-Benz New York Fashion Week's Spring 2012 Collections at Lincoln Center's Damrosch Park.