CO-ED DRESSING: On the heels of Gucci’s decision to show both women’s and men’s rtw collections together, the London-based label 1205 is taking a similar tack, WWD has learned.
The label, under creative director Paula Gerbase, will merge its women’s wear and men’s wear lines starting in September with the spring 2017 season, the brand said Thursday. Gerbase said she plans to return to how she initially presented when she launched her label in 2010.
“It’s been something that has always been part of what I’ve done,” Gerbase told WWD. “When we started doing shows I was actually showing men’s during the women’s shows. Gradually, as the collections developed, I felt perhaps it might be better having separate shows.”
“Having done that now I think that going back to where we started. It’s closer to real life. I didn’t really feel like it made sense anymore to separate them in a fashion context when actually the customers themselves are actually wearing them together.”
While the recent news of Gucci making a co-ed shift on the runway, Gerbase believes that other brands will eventually follow.
“Of course, everyone has been feeling the strain of the schedule and I do think it’s relevant time to be questioning why the schedule is the way that it is and whether there is a way to move forward altogether. I think it’s a really great opportunity at this point in time when everything is being discussed to actually start to find new ways to show. I think it’s inevitable that there will be other brands that start showing this way. I think there is definitely a feeling like it’s perhaps a more modern way of going forward.”
Gerbase’s decision to unify men’s and women’s shows comes at a time when companies including Burberry and Tom Ford have opted to show men’s and women’s simultaneously in a seasonless or see-now-buy-now concept. But Gerbase isn’t planning to follow this format.
“I still believe that in terms of what we do with fabric development and the quality, attention and time that is necessary to develop these things, it’s important to wait,” she said. “I think the customer is definitely very advanced and also very informed. They understand that you have to wait for quality so we don’t plan in doing any ‘see-now-buy-now.’ I think it’s only really relevant for very big companies that are able to invest heavily in stock. I don’t know if that just adds to more wastage.”
While the range won’t be available for purchase immediately, the brand plans to keep within the sales season calendar. The label will continue to sell men’s and women’s pre-collections in January and June while women’s will take place after shows in September and February.
The designer honed her Savile Row tailoring skills at Kilgour and Hardy Amies.
The label is known for Gerbase’s minimal aesthetic for both her men’s and women’s ranges. While she debuted her line with men’s wear, she took a break from showing men’s for a few seasons to focus on her women’s offering. She staged a show in January to showcase her men’s fall range. Keeping in line with her aesthetic, Gerbase utilized luxurious fabrics into a plethora of understated outerwear.
The brand was awarded NewGen sponsorship under the British Fashion Council in 2015.
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