pic taken from lunch.com
Some designers are inflated to Kingpin status and probably deservedly so taking into context the talent it takes to create fashion that can be considered art; something for which McQueen was credited a master at doing. The problem, however, is that building a brand that sells is a mammoth task. And maybe the frivolities that have previously been seen as necessary- the grand parties at which celebrities are brought in to schmooze with industry heavyweights all at the designer’s expense- are no longer sustainable. Maybe they never were.
When South Africa Fashion Week decided to only admit journos, buyers and faithful clients of the designers to the shows it was widely recognized as a step in the right direction. And maybe many more interventions need to be looked into by designers as they sweat blood and tears to make their businesses work.
But then again, a lot of South Africa’s designers don’t have a large staff and don’t often do the whole extravagant thing I just called unnecessary. Maybe on these shores the key to making businesses profitable would be to study new brand strategies that have not yet been implemented by a lot of local houses. In designing these strategies, however, the size of our market needs to be taken into account and the UK with its limited market size is a good place to learn from. America is not.
Designer dreams don’t pay the bills is the title of the article and I think it is required reading for anyone who takes this industry seriously.