In a room with a handful of fashion journalists shuffling in and out and finally settling down, Peter Som showed his direction for Bill Blass’ fall collection. The collection was the first full line for the Som era at Blass. Something special is happening that has not happened in years: pre-fall collections are starting to excite the fashion masses.
Normally around this time designers are showing their resort collections and what’s to come between the Spring and the fall showings. This season, the buzz hyphenated words are pre-fall. While resort still holds sway, a handful of designers got the jump on New York Fashion week by showing a preview of a full collection. There are several advantages to doing this not the least of which is generating buzz behind a line while rarely receiving negative press. Reason for the spare bad press is that reputable journalist are loathe to publish a negative review for a quarter of a collection. Pre-Fall also allows designers to test the waters. If the reception is lukewarm, they still have time to make changes. Though they will never admit to being swayed by the whims of the press, they’re watching and listening.
There’s also the climatologist issue being reported in fashion circles. While it has been a slow process for designers overall, the larger designers who are in big box retailers are listening to the weather prognosticators and are planning their lines so that women are prepared for a globally warmed fall, or an out of nowhere chill. Designers can then roll out pre-fall pieces in September for women looking to get a jump on fall but not go deep into the pool.
Some of the pre-fall designers this time around that were able to roll out their collections include the aforementioned Peter Som who stated that his starting point, ” was Mr. Blass’ sketchbooks circa 1969-1970,” he continues that he, “wanted to update Blass classics with luxury and whimsy.” The previews for the collection were mostly positive with Laird Borrelli-Persson of style.com saying, “Som stayed true to the founder’s focus on sportswear, especially when it came to coats.”
Other designers that showed their pre-fall collections include Oscar de La Renta who decided that floral is not only the domain of the Spring season, fall loves flowers as well. Designer Karl Lagerfeld’s collection for Chanel was controversially beautiful as well with bee-hive wearing models; in a nod to the beehive goddess Amy winehouse herself strolling down the runway.
Pre-Fall is becoming more of a spectacle than resort. It could be that the precursor to fall fashion week is more exciting than the main event itself.