Following a new, common industry trend, Olivier Rousteing has announced Balmain‘s intent to incorporate a “see now, buy now” technique. The fashion house is particularly integrated into the social media scene, and has a great number of highly successful collaboration collections with famous retail chains, making this transition seem rather smooth. Just this past Wednesday, Rousteing was able to discuss his views on this type of calendar while in Seoul, South Korea for the Condé Nast International Luxury Conference. He spoke with Instagram businesswoman Eva Chen, expressing his support of the trend, which seems to go hand in hand with what we could have expected from the designer.
“I believe in ‘see now, buy now’ – we have to stay connected and go faster,” Rousteing said in his discussion; this conversation was transcripted as part of a piece from Vogue U.K. “We are probably going to head for [that system], for sure. But it’s important to keep key pieces that you will sell later and also have pieces that are available immediately after the show. It’s good to have a mix of price points, too.”
That might just be one of the most reasonable outlooks on this trend to date; the largest argument against such a system is that it takes away the “luxury” of luxury fashion, as the anticipation of waiting for a stunning new garment is not as pressing. However, designers can, and should, have the best of both worlds, as Rousteing has proposed here. Having some garments available instantly can help tide over speed-hungry viewers who just need to get their fashion-fix for the new season, but then the same consumers will still be able to experience the lustful anticipation of knowing their high-end garment will be coming in months down the road.
Rousteing has been doing a great deal of work through his time at the helm of Balmain, by incorporating the customers into the equation of luxury fashion. In this high-end area of the fashion world, it is easy to think of everyday consumers as being removed from the perimeter, but the creative director has been moving to bridge this gap for a more inclusive experience for all. His collection for H&M brought luxury fashion to a more accessible front, as did his appearances as part of Kim Kardashian’s ever-popular mobile app. So hopping on the bandwagon for this system of fashion is right up Rousteing’s alley.
For the most part, see now, buy now has proven to be highly unpopular in Paris (During Paris Fashion Week, France’s governing body of fashion even released an official statement on the matter), yet perhaps Rousteing will be able to find a way to “adjust” the system to better appease those who oppose the change – but only time will tell.
Photo courtesy of Livingly