Video once killed the radio star. And now blogging has killed New York Fashion Week. The fact is, essentially any asshole who thinks he or she is Tavi Gevinson can get in by claiming to have a reputable fashion/style blog has taken all the exclusivity out of this momentous occasion. And yes, as someone who has her own illegitimate blog, I probably have no room to be talking, but at the same time, I have reverence for singular events. And Fashion Week has transformed into the antithesis of what it once set out to be–now it’s just common.
There were long ago telltale signs of NYFW’s impending demise: Its appearance as a plot point in the Sex and the City movie (granted this was for the Mercedes-Benz sponsored version of Fashion Week, but still), BCBGMAXAZRIA being allowed to show collections in it, etc. But never before has its loss of edge been so apparent as in 2014. From being able to stream it live on style.com to the coverage of it on non-fashion related blogs like Bushwick Daily, the allure of this once hallowed week has markedly vanished.
Gone are the elegant days of the 40s and 50s when Fashion Week was still in its infancy and Dior’s New Look was the talk of New York City. Its removal from Bryant Park also helped to signal its downfall from sophisticated showcase to free-for-all circus. Now it’s atrophied into some sort of expensive high school fashion show you might expect to see at La Guardia. What’s the thrill of Fashion Week if it’s so accessible?
And while, yes, in most cases, the democratization of media is preferable, Fashion Week is one area where it’s not. Haute couture is now soiled by the likes of Tory Burch live streaming her show on Google. Everything about that sentence is wrong, and merely serves to prove that there is no magic left in Fashion Week. Perhaps its future has been foretold by Alexander Wang, the only designer who made an attempt to breathe new life into the increasingly cheesy NSFW by holding his show in the Brooklyn Navy Yard. Then again, Fashion Week needs more than a re-location to be considered remotely invigorating again.