Fashion Week is officially under a month away; In our Countdown to Fashion Week, we examine what designers and insiders are working on this week.
It was hard to miss designers’ Pre-Fall 2012 collections this year. Prabal Gurung released a video debuting his first Pre-Fall offering featuring models Hanne Gaby and Alanna Zimme. Oscar de la Renta staged a full-on runway show. Also, Phillip Lim proved that “It” items can come out of these interim collections with a series of cashmere sweaters with oversize comic book-inspired lettering are getting a lot of attention.
But one has to wonder how smaller labels, without huge ateliers behind them, are handling the increasing pressure to provide retailers with more and more deliveries. Most designers showed their Pre-Fall collections in December or early January, leaving merely a month or two to put together their Fall 2012 collections, which will debut in mid-February at New York Fashion Week.
Jason Wu told us, "There are four equal seasons now,” speaking of Resort, Spring, Pre-Fall and Fall collections, implying that an equal amount of work now goes into each. “These are not watered down collections,” he says. As for how tough the fashion calendar is on Wu, he says, “Let’s just say I’m very very busy. It never stops.”
Wu showed his Pre-Fall collection in December, and will debut his latest Fall collection on February 10th at a raw space in Soho. Considering that Jason Wu for Target debuts on February 5th, the designer isn’t getting much time to breathe these days.
Jenni Kayne (pictured) explained that she works on Pre-Fall and Fall concurrently in order to meet deadlines. "Ideas for Fall/Winter start brewing in the spring, just as Resort is finishing up,” she says. "Direction is then established for Pre-Fall and Fall. We start designing into the concept and making fabric choices. As we go along, we start to choose what makes sense for the time of year the clothes deliver, and what will move the story forward."
Kayne’s Pre-Fall collection, which includes a cobalt blue maxi skirt and a perfectly-cut fur-trimmed trench coat, likely hint at what Kayne has in the works for her upcoming Fall collection.
As for how much of a strain the fashion calendar is on Kayne, she confessed it’s "very difficult." She says, "We have to start to develop very early in order to meet the deadlines that the calendar sets. That means that you have to be confident in all of your choices and ideas from the get-go."
Published at 4:53 PM EDT on Jan 19, 2012