The runways of NY Fashion Week are the pinnacle of all things glamorous and can turn fashion designers into industry darlings. However, it is also a very costly production and may not be the best place for a new designer to launch their line. As much as I love, love, love seeing shows during Fashion Week, I don’t recommend that new designers spend that kind of money to get their designs seen so early in their careers. This post will give you ideas for alternative ways to showcase your fashion line during Fashion Week (or any time of year!).
Putting together a Fashion Week runway show can be very expensive. It costs at least $30k to show at NY Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. You need to have proper funding to pay for the: space, models, hair, makeup, set design, lighting, photographers, videographers, plus the cost of your actual designs, among other things. In my opinion, new designers shouldn’t be doing runways shows until they are making enough money to sustain normal business activities plus the cost of putting together a Fashion Week Runway Shows.
Fashion Week Runway Shows are the best platform for established leaders in fashion innovation. There are over 100 shows in NY during Fashion Week and it’s hard for Fashion Editors and Buyers to make it to all of the well-known designer runway shows. If you are able to hold your fashion event close to where the actual runway shows are taking place, it makes it easier for editors and buyers to stop in and attend.
Wherever you decide to have your fashion show, be sure to have someone videotape it so you can post it on your website and blog (and so the fashion bloggers can do the same thing for you!). Live video-streaming is also an excellent option for your fans and clients who live out of town but still want to support you and “be a part” of your fashion show!
Here are a few ideas that can be used for a more cost-effective fashion presentation:
1. Do a fashion installation in a hotel suite. You can have models standing in the room that’s put together like a chic fashion shoot set wearing your most exciting and show-stopping designs for editors and buyers to walk around and see.
2. Throw a cocktail party at a popular local lounge that features a few models in your designs to launch your line. You can invite lots of friends, family, buyers, bloggers, local boutique owners and press to attend and you will also have some of the location’s regular foot traffic to rely on.
3. Are you an early-bird? Consider hosting a small invite-only breakfast buffet at a cute local restaurant where you can do a fashion show. Both women and men love free food and the fact that it comes with entertainment (your fashion show) is an added bonus for them!
4. Is there a great neighborhood garden, park or local museum that you could negotiate using as a space to showcase your designs?
5. Many colleges have fashion shows, especially around homecoming time. Could this be another way for you to get your designs seen?