MATCH MAKER: Bally is joining the coed club, with plans to show its men’s and women’s collections during a single presentation during Milan Women’s Fashion Week in February.
The decision is part of a new business strategy and a natural step, said design director Pablo Coppola.
“There is clearly a need to rethink the way we are showing collections. We have taken our time to address the evolving landscape, and this feels the right direction for the season,” he said.
The women’s and men’s fall press presentation will take place on Thursday, Feb. 23 at the Biblioteca Nazionale Braidense, at 28 via Brera.
Bally is among a host of fashion brands, including Paul Smith, Vivienne Westwood and Gucci, that will make the switch to coed shows this year. Last spring Burberry unleashed an industry trend when it said it was showing men’s and women’s together on the catwalk. Since then, brands including Kenzo, Dsquared2, Bottega Veneta and Tom Ford have joined the fray.
Later this week, some 12 labels will be staging coed shows during London Fashion Week Men’s. They include Casely-Hayford, Christopher Raeburn, Sibling, Belstaff and Westwood, who is returning from Milan to the London runways with her men’s collection.
Bally’s latest strategy is not entirely new: Although it has always held separate presentations for men’s and women’s wear in Milan, its men’s wear presentations were often peppered with looks from the women’s pre-collections, including footwear and accessories. The collections also have similar inspirations.
Bally’s women’s resort collection, and the men’s spring one were both inspired by David Hicks interiors and Sixties-era Mods. During the presentation in June, Coppola said both collections had the same foundations. “It’s a very rich sauce, made from lots of ingredients: Studio 54 transferred to a ski resort, it’s David Hicks — and the Bally archive.” He added: “I never think archives should be sacrosanct — it’s good to look at them, and then play around with them.”