The Fashion Industry in the Post-Pandemic World

Actualizado: jul 20

BY IZABELLA R. RICCIARDI



The Coronavirus also presents fashion with a chance to reset and completely reshape the industry’s value chain - not to mention an opportunity to reassess the value by which we measure your

actions.

The State of Fashion 2020 Coronavirus Update, by Business of Fashion


There's no introduction needed for the present events of the COVID-19 global pandemic crisis, and how it changed lives everywhere. But what is happening with the fashion industry after the lockdowns in the world's biggest cities and the postponement of more than two seasons? Also, what is happening within the revival - and bankrupt - requests from the biggest department conglomerates, which until the half of the 2010 decade seemed to be invincible?

The BOF analysis explains that the fashion we know today, with large conglomerates which have thousands of workers around the globe and are worth billions - even in luxury fashion - is a new modern aspect, which started 30 years ago.


The post-pandemic economic revival will stare at a great recession, condemning part of the industry to adapt to a new reality. Like in 2008 for example, when more than 6.6 million US Citizens applied to unemployment insurance. Moreover, according to BOF, 75% of the buyers in Europe and USA are positive that their financial situation is going to be negatively impacted. About 80% of fashion companies will be negatively affected after two or three months of closure; 27% to 30% is the decrease forecast for general fashion, and 35% to 39% for luxury items. The increase forecast will not be more than 5%, even with some analysis counting 2021 in.


In the interview with Julia Condgno for this article, she highlights a contrast from the 2008 recession. We saw that, during the end of the 2010s, an anxious new behavior of the consumer flourished, and it may have been due to environmental repercussions. This consumer is more conscious of how much they buy, what they buy and from whom they buy - companies and brands that share the same values, mainly political.


The analysis made about the future of the post-pandemic way of consuming are not very optimistic from a sustainable-ethic point of view. The way of consuming will certainly change, but it will be more of a consequence due to the purchasing power decrease around the world.

In a general way, I believe that the consumption and the conscience regarding the way of buying won't change, just the people who were already sensitive by those values before.

- Extract from Julia Condogno's interview for this article. 

In The Fashion Victims with the journalist Pierre Alexandre, he says that the fashion industry has a tendency to "go back to work" as quickly as possible, longing to stabilize the consumption chain again, and in consequence, the level of profit.


The sustainable credentials will be able to be used as a method to recoup the trust and the wallets from the consumers, as they emerge from the decrease after three or four months of closure. In my opinion, if this is the new pattern of the fashion industry meant to conquer consumers – although it's not a genuine attitude, as it rarely is on the fashion world, at least it can help us have a new vision of the patterns from a more sustainable view.

I believe we must search for those lost values, where we can look with more affection and caution for those who make fashion (aside from designers and influencers) and to the people (who are people before becoming potential consumers) will be fundamental for us to establish a more ethical, possible and fairer environment. Words like: responsibility, truth, affection, resilience need to go beyond massive marketing campaigns and reside in the heart of actions and revolutions.

- Extract from Julia Condogno's interview for this article.

Luxury brands are announcing changes on the traditional fashion calendars. Big brands like Saint Laurent and Gucci announced their withdrawal from the calendar for the rest of 2020, according to the different statements posted in both brands' Instagram accounts. "Saint Laurent has chosen to take control of its pace and reshape its schedule”, reads an extract from the statement from Saint Laurent.


Also, new fashion shows are being launched virtually. The first 3D show happened at the end of May this year, by a small innovative brand, Anifa Mvuemba – they performed a show on dimensional bodies to showcase their new collection. You can find the whole fashion show on Instagram (@hanifaofficial) or in the designer’s personal account (@anifam). I want to emphasize the importance of this fashion show for the industry; a new technology created and idealized by a black woman with her own brand, which major brands are already considering using.


I believe that, if we really want a 'new fashion', within a fair future to all who work in this sector, we must revisit every aspect. Turn everything upside-down. As this is not possible (at least I don't see how), we can start to intensify (in a real way) actions which already started opening relevant dialogues in the market.

References:

The state of fashion 2020- Coronavirus update by Business of Fashion: https://www.mckinsey.com/~/media/mckinsey/industries/retail/our%20insights/its%20time%20to%20rewire%20the%20fashion%20system%20state%20of%20fashion%20coronavirus%20update/the-state-of-fashion-2020-coronavirus-update-vf.ashx 

Interview with Julia Codogno (The interview and whole report will be published here: https://medium.com/search?q=%40izaricciardi). 

Statement from Saint Laurent and Gucci: https://www.instagram.com/p/B_fnqYeDAzA/ https://www.instagram.com/p/CAikqmCCYEw/

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