New York Fashion Week is shrinking.
The Council of Fashion Designers of America will cut back the number of days designated for the spring shows in September to three.
On its calendar, the dates are still listed as Sept. 11 to 16. But in a notice sent to members and obtained by WWD, the spring shows will now run Sept. 14 to 16. If there is enough demand, the CFDA said, Sept. 17 will be added as a supplemental day.
The group stressed that the shortened calendar will be for the September shows only and no decision has been made for pre-fall 2021 or beyond.
In its notice, the CFDA said the shorter calendar came about as a result of the “changes we have seen from live events to digital activations, and awareness of city regulations to protect the health and well-being of everyone.”
The group is working on an updated version of the official NYFW application for returning or new brands that will be shared in the coming weeks. It is also planning to provide all participating brands with digital resources to showcase their collections that will allow them to “share their latest work, maximize exposure and operate directly with the industry,” the notice said.
Because so many brands are experiencing financial difficulties as a result of the pandemic, the CFDA said it would provide free listing on its Fashion Calendar for all participating brands, regardless of whether or not they are CFDA members.
Reached for comment, Mark Beckham, vice president of marketing and events for CFDA, said the group will be launching a digital platform shortly that is expected to meet the needs of designers who have historically shown on the official schedule.
He also addressed the shortened week, adding that because no live shows with audiences are expected to be staged in September, “we can fit the same amount of shows in to three days because of no need for travel time in between the shows. The three days of shows is only for this season as a result of COVID-19.” He also acknowledged that the impact of the pandemic on production and budgets “may cause some designers to skip this season.”
So far, Marc Jacobs and Michael Kors — two of the leading names of NYFW — have said they will not be showing in September, although Kors plans to do an event in October related to spring 2021.
The men’s shows, which had originally been scheduled for June, were postponed and are now expected to be part of the calendar in September. Initially, they were going to coincide with the men’s trade shows in New York in July, but those too were pushed to late September as a result of the pandemic.
Erin Hawker, founder and owner of Agentry PR, said her New York Men’s Day, a compilation of emerging designers that historically kicks off New York Fashion Week: Men’s, will now become part of the CFDA’s September calendar. Eight brands are expected to participate and show a transitional spring collection and perhaps a peek at fall 2021.