Valstrom’s Top 5 Fashion Moments of 2012
1. Balenciaga Musical Chairs
The moment Nicolas Ghesquière left Balenciaga after 15 years of service, rumours abound who would replace him. In a matter of days the fashion press announced it was to be Christopher Kane, who had just left Versus at Versace. A Twitter typo added to the confusion when Christopher Shannon was announced, then as the dust settled Alexander Wang was officially appointed at Balenciaga. Too much drama.
2. Chinas Luxury Peak
A shudder was sent through the luxury fashion industry in September as Burberry lost £1bn of its share price. The main reason: China’s slowdown. With spectacular growth and sales in the Asian market over the past few years, and despite the global recession, the world’s most powerful fashion brands had projected ever increasing profits. Burberry’s shares were at a record high earlier this year, but their announcement of the declining market saw £1bn wiped off the groups share price. Despite this slower growth, China will comprise 20 percent of global luxury sales by 2015, surpassing Japan as the world’s single largest luxury market.
3. High Street Capsules
Designer and celebrity collections for high street brands were at a peak this year. H&M alone had multiple capsules including Marni, Anna Dello Russo, Maison Martin Margiela, Brick Lane Bikes, and David Beckham. Other notables were Rihanna for Armani Jeans, Yoko Ono for Opening Ceremony, and even the Kardashian sisters for Dorothy Perkins. It gives high street brands the credibility of independent fashion houses, and extensive press coverage with celebrity tie-ins. Donatella Versace has adopted a similar template for the Versus line, starting next year: Guest designers per season.
4. Supermodels at the Olympics
When it came to the closing ceremony at the Olympics in August, the committee wanted British fashion added into the mix. But instead of a cutting edge presentation to mirror the innovation of the London scene, Kate Moss, Naomi Campbell, Stella Tenant, Karen Elson, Georgia May Jagger, Lily Cole, Lily Donaldson, Jourdan Dunn and David Gandy stepped off the back of a truck and did a walk and pose in front of over 100m television viewers. It appeared unimaginative and vapid. The models wore Alexander McQueen, Burberry, Erdem, Jonathan Saunders, Christopher Kane, Vivienne Westwood, Victoria Beckham and Paul Smith.
5. Hedi vs Media
Hedi Slimanes debut collection at the helm of Yves Saint Laurent led to the most headlines this year. It began with the rebranding of YSL to Saint Laurent (Paris), orchestrated by Slimane in an effort to update and streamline his vision for the brand. So the PR teams did all they could to control what images and terminology the press could use to convey the rebrand, but it caused confusion and retaliation. On top of this, a public spat Slimane had with NY Times fashion critic Cathy Horyn arose. She was banned from the YSL show. Hedi followed this by publishing his version of the Times which criticized Horyn’s ability and credentials. YSL said that he tweeted from his personal account and was out of their control. The reason for the feud was a comment by Horyn in 2004, where she compared Slimane to Raf Simons.