Despite Pitti Uomo releasing details of the guest designer for its 83rd edition (Kenzo, if you hadn’t heard), London Collections: Men (LCM) was the first to show its full hand, as last Wednesday saw the British Fashion Council (BFC) release the full autumn 13 schedule.
And boy is it ballsy.
Back in August when the BFC announced the date clash, I offered up the opinion that this situation, whereby the two events overlap by two days on the 8th and 9th of January, was only going to work if both parties “played nice” when scheduling their events. But it seems the BFC have done anything but, instead opting to stick some of its biggest hitters on the third day, seemingly deliberately halving the duration of Pitti Uomo.
Tom Ford, Richard Nichol, Christopher Kane, E Tautz, JW Anderson and Ozwald Boateng among others will all exhibit their wares on Wednesday 9th, Boateng as late as 6pm, meaning that if menswear buyers are going to hang around for that, they’ll miss two full days of Pitti and will have to squeeze their time in Florence down to a day and a half. I say a day and a half because Milan Fashion Week kicks off in earnest on Saturday 12th and attendees will head to Italy’s fashion capital the night before to ensure they’re raring to go the next day. Buyers are unlikely to miss the Saturday as Jil Sander, Dolce & Gabbana and Burberry Prorsum traditionally show in the first 24 hours.
Pitti Uomo will have to rely heavily on its biggest names and ability to put on a show to entice the buyers for longer but the fact remains that no matter who goes where when, someone is going to miss out. By ‘someone’ I mean buyers and brands, the two essential ingredients of a successful trade show – here’s hoping whether it’s the LCM designers or interesting brands showing at Pitti Uomo, somehow everyone gets a fair crack of the whip.