Thought the fashion month show scheduling nightmare was over? Nope, it just got way more complicated. France's Chambre Syndicale has been weirdly quiet while New York, London, and Milan have been battling over show dates. Until now, that is. They just dropped a bomb that essentially pits New York against the rest of the fashion world.
If you'll recall, the latest development seemed hopeful for a scheduling resolution: New York agreed to move its spring show dates back to September 6, 2012, and Milan and London agreed to a subsequent second Thursday of the month New York start date for the 2013 and 2014 seasons. But Milan had two conditions: They wanted New York to cut its fashion week by one day so that editors could make it to London's menswear shows (which are usually eclipsed by the first day of Milan shows), and that all the cities--Paris included--had to agree.
Well, Paris doesn't agree. The Chambre Syndicale just released the 2013 and 2014 show dates, and they plan to start their spring shows a week earlier than the suggested October 2 and October 1 start dates, throwing everything into turmoil and causing all the players to give us some really good sound bites, courtesy of WWD.
Didier Grumbach, the president of the Chambre Syndicale, said:
"It was perfectly open and clear and very obvious that our members could not accept this...We fall at the end of the calendar. All of the member houses agreed that this would make them very late in taking orders, which in turn would be penalizing for deliveries. It's an industrial reason you are a manufacturer, you need your orders early.
Who wants to be penalized? It doesn't make sense. We have had lots of meetings about pushing Paris show dates earlier as many brands really want that."
CFDA president Diane von Furstenberg, who is clearly at her wits' end with the whole thing, responded, "I don't understand why Paris completely and totally just ignored what all of us have worked so hard on. I am speechless." New York had agreed to move its 2012 spring show dates back to September 6 but refused to give up their last day of shows, which usually feature Calvin Klein and Ralph Lauren's shows. This was the last sticking point that the cities were supposed to work out at meetings in January.
Steven Kolb expressed hope that Italy's Mario Boselli of the Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana (who has been rather bratty during all these negotiations), would stick to the latest second Thursday agreement. That's probably not going to happen, since Boselli told WWD, "One thing is sure: it's unthinkable for Milan and Paris to overlap. We were very clear, we tried to find a solution, but we didn't succeed. We were going to move if Paris was also moving. As Paris is not moving, we won't either. Perhaps the only way out would be for the Americans to reduce their fashion week to seven days, as nine days is too long, and start a couple of days after Labor Day."
So 250 shows potentially condensed down to seven days? We won't plan on sleeping at ALL during New York Fashion Week.