For the Israelis, it was a significant moment. Tel Aviv Fashion Week, which occurred Nov. 21-24, was the first time in some 30 years that Israeli designers, models and journalists gathered together to view Israeli fashion on the runway. But no buyers just yet. The industry, said the shows’ producers, is not quite ready for prime time.
“No buyers, only press this time,” said Ofir Lev, the 36-year-old former model and businessman who spearheaded the effort with his producer partner, Motty Reif, known locally for producing Beverly Hills Fashion Week.
“There is fashion and creativity in Israel, and there are always big brands being brought to Israel, but Israeli brands are not ready to go abroad,” said Lev. “It will take two to five years to put Israeli fashion on the map.”
According to Lev, deputy chief executive officer of the Israel Textile and Fashion Association, the local fashion market has a $150 million turnover, but growth of the designer market is around 8 percent on an annual basis, “which is considerable.”
There were some 600 people attending the three days of shows, which were influenced by the New York, London and Tokyo fashion weeks. Yet out of the 50 Israeli designers asked to participate in this initial effort, only 10 said yes. The others, said Lev, were too nervous. While the costs of each show were relatively modest, about $7,000 a show, the entire three days cost some $2 million, estimated Lev, including bringing in the journalists as well as Roberto and Eva Cavalli, who helped launch the week. He was able to snag sponsorship from Maybelline and several other Israeli companies, including LaIsha, a local women’s magazine and Renuar, a retail clothing company. But he admitted that there’s a long way to go before Israel’s fashion week becomes a regular event.
The shows “put a little light on this place in the world,” said Dorin Frankfurt, one of the grande dames of current Israeli design who has been in business for more than 25 years, and is one of the few Israelis who exports her women’s collection to the U.S. and Europe. “It’s vital for a designer to show clothes on a runway, on a budget that is reasonable.”
Another leading designer, Sasson Kedem, whose conceptual designs steer clear from the more form-fitting shapes used by other Israelis, said the shows were important in order to show the world that “we are here, we are clever and we make this ourselves.”
“There’s a buzz happening,” he said. “I was just on Israeli television, talking about fashion, finally.”
Still, it will take time to translate fashion shows into an opportunity for buyers, and into major exports for the designers. Nearly all of the local designers create, produce and manufacture their collections in Israel, where textiles are more limited and the sewing process isn’t quite as refined as elsewhere. That keeps prices high while the finished product isn’t always as good as it should be.
“There won’t be any business out of this,” said Gideon Oberson, who produces his well-known swimsuits as well as a ready-to-wear collection. “Even if buyers come, most Israeli designers can’t produce the amounts needed, and the local prices will be too high for export. But it got everyone thinking about how to prepare for such an eventuality.”
Eva Cavalli commented that what the Israeli fashion industry lacks is manufacturing facilities and suppliers in order to fully flourish.
“When you have to go so far for supplies, it makes it harder,” she said. “There’s also a lot of creativity here, but there has to be more of a focus on techniques and workmanship. That exists here, there is the potential, but it needs to be nurtured.”
@chanel and @pharrell dropped what’s being dubbed as the world’s most exclusive sneakers yesterday. The Adidas Originals NMD Hu, which Williams designed in collaboration with Chanel and @adidasoriginals, has a waiting list of over 120K people who pre-registered online at chanelatcolette.fr –– and only 500 pairs are on sale. The singer predicted the resale value of the shoes could reach $40K. Read the full interview on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdfashion
@imanshumpert is diving deeper into his creative endeavors and relaunching his clothing line, Post 90s, and is helping to raise money for the hurricane victims in St. Maarten with a jersey he’s designed with his brother. The Cleveland Cavaliers player talked to WWD about kneeling during the national anthem, working with fashion brands and how he wants to be more than an @nba player. Read the interview on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
Not only does #TheProfit return to CNBC tonight, but @marcuslemonis has launched @shopmarcus, a new shopping and lifestyle retail experience in Aspen and Chicago, with more locations to come. The retail stores offer in-store stylists and a variety of contemporary womenswear selections.
“It’s life, I’m going to face it,” @mingxi11 sighed. “I fell, but you know, I think the most important thing is that I get back up. I had the love, the help from my sister — the girl next to me Gizele [Oliveira] — she’s so nice. When I went backstage everybody was trying to comfort me like ‘Oh Ming, it’s OK.’ I’m really, really touched. I think it’s them who gave me the courage to go back on stage for the finale,” Xi told WWD of her fall at the @victoriassecret fashion show. (📷: David Fisher) #wwdfashion #vsfashionshow #victoriassecret
@louisvuitton tapped @therealpeterlindbergh for its latest city-centric photo book, which is part of a series called Fashion Eye. The primarily black and white book captures the spirit of Berlin in 57 images shot between 1989 and 2019. “Berlin is an inspiration for me, more than a city. I mean @millajovovich is simply Berlin!” said Lindbergh. #wwdfashion
“You know, I think audiences expect a certain performance so I have to deliver to them what they’re expecting to a certain degree. But I’m also a different actor and a different person, I have my own spin on the character,” says @noahegalvin of his takeover of the leading role in “Dear Evan Hansen” following the departure of @bensplatt, who originated the role. Read WWD’s interview with the 23-year-old actor on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
For pre-fall 2018, @etro created richly-colored wonderland, using tapestries, textiles and wallpapers from the Eastern world at large. The line featured floral and graphic prints and jacquard motifs, like this two-piece look featured here. #wwdfashion (📷: Giovanna Pavesi)
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)