This London Fashion Week, alike to many previous has saturated our social media feeds. This can be great if you’re a fashion lover, but slightly disruptive if you could not care less.
Twice a year designers traditionally showcase their collection at fashion week. A lot of time, effort and energy goes into the production of these events; finding a venue, models, garments, music, set, invitations, guests, sponsors, makeup, hair – need we go on. Packed out with journalists, buyers and VIPs, the whole system of the fashion show is a marketing tool.
Nonetheless, surely designers want to communicate their concept and gain the full attention of those chosen individuals who are actually invited to the show. But with everyone raising their phones prior to the first model to walk on the runway, are the guests fully engaging in the experience? Within seconds it’s posted on their Instastory and Snapchat, aided by emoji’s, gifs, hashtags and a tag of the designer or brand.
Yes, you are probably watching the show on the screen of your phone, and the reality of it is 95% of the people there are too. Even if they are social media savvy — they’re missing the details of the garments, the general mood simply because they are distracted. This really takes the magic away from the buzz and excitement the show is aiming to deliver.
These videos and images create great content for publications and those with large social media platforms. It also helps the designer’s work be circulated quickly, easily and a lot cheaper than many campaigns. But with over twenty official photographers present, there’s no doubt who will be catching the best images. Moreover, with the rise of live streaming which pretty much invites everyone to the show digitally, do we need to see the snippets on the (in comparison) lo-fi feed?
Having a phone in your hand, be it a fashion show, concert or event is at very least an inconvenience — we are not fully present. We all need to remember that profiles on social media are carefully constructed. And the majority of the time these Insta-famous individuals are showing exactly what they want you to see. (If you want to see the real them, check their tagged photos – that’s if they haven’t hidden them too.)
Maybe it is too little too late to turn our back on social media at fashion shows and a lot of other aspects of our lives. But where is the excitement? Where is the big reveal? Nobody can go back to the office and in detail explain the amazing art, creativity and statement you’ve seen without the general response of ‘I saw it on Instagram’.