NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 11: A model walks the runway at the Alexander Wang Spring 2011 fashion show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week at Pier 94 on September 11, 2010 in New York City. (Photo by Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images)
As the six-month lag time between runway shows and clothes actually arriving in stores becomes more and more of an outdated schedule, designers have been looking towards ways to make their collections more quickly available to consumers. The latest offering on the table, set to debut during New York's Autumn/Winter fashion week next February, is Moda Operandi, a website that will allow members to place orders from designers' collections within 48 hours of their runway shows.
Founded by Gilt veteran Aslaug Magnusdottir, Moda Operandi will offer four women's collections per year—spring, resort, fall and pre-fall—from approximately 50 designers from New York, Paris, London and Milan, the WSJ reports, including Thakoon, Proenza Schouler, Prabal Gurung, Narcisco Rodriguez, Alexander Wang, and Giambattista Valli. The site's modus operandi (sorry, we couldn't help ourselves) will include allowing members to shop the full collections and place orders with a 50-percent deposit, with goods likely to arrive four months later.
While the time lapse decrease from six months to four might feel rather unsubstantial—especially for anyone who's grown dependent on click-and-own instant gratification—there are other benefits to the venture, both for consumers as well as designers. Besides giving members first access to a designer's collection, it also might appeal to women who seek clothes in larger sizes, which are often stocked in smaller numbers at retailers.
Additionally, designers get more immediate feedback about the salability of certain items, hence knowing what to produce larger quantities of. "There's so much money left on the table today because nobody really knows what's going to sell," Magnusdottir tells the WSJ. "The big hits sell out immediately and they could have sold more. And the rest winds up on sale racks."