Do runway shows really help fashion brands?

Do runway shows help fashion brands? These top Nigerian designers and stylists have a thing or two to say...

Fashion weeks are marked in the calendar and heralded by style statements saved for that time of the year.

The shows happen with designer showing their latest collection 'throwing down a worthy show' giving them an opportunity to get creative (Chanel had a casino themed presentation last year, Tom Ford had everywhere turned millennial pink for his Spring 2018 r-t-w presentation while a lot of designers go out of their way to close shows with chart topping artists and the list goes on).

A fashion show "is an event put on by a fashion designer to showcase their upcoming line of clothing at fashion weeks". There are always mixed reactions to whether runway shows add anything to a fashion brand (because essentially the essence of a designer showing offerings is to sell or be seen).

Nigerian designers and stylists shared their opinion about how runway shows impact the fashion industry.

Creative director of AmarelisLara Cole thinks runway shows help brands. "Yes it does, It helps to showcase your new designs to buyers, retail stores, customers and celebrity clients and generally show a more creative side to ones designs".

Celebrity stylist Rhoda Ebun also agrees "Runway shows help the brand through visibility. The stylist, fashion editors and buyers are introduced to the brands new collection via the shows".

Fashion editor Oge Agu shares; "As the name implies, it literally gives a brand the opportunity to put on a show! Creating room to go over and beyond, captivating a gullible audience and feeding it just about any amount of information; fashion it has created and willing to put out"

What i'm trying to say is this: With a runway show, a brand has the opportunity to create and feed whatever it feels like it would take to break into the hearts of an audience that is willing and ready to receive. I mean that's why people attend these things am I right".

Menswear enthusiast Akin Faminu agrees runway shows come with add ons; "Yes it should but that depends on the people viewing the show, both live and over media, because those are the people that would buy.

A more direct way it helps is through publicity which in turn  also increases chances of buyers approaching the brand".

Creative director of Eman Zazar, Coco Olorunfemi thinks it doesn't help much in developing countries; "The question of whether or not runway shows help brands is highly dependent on what the brands hope to achieve by entering one. If a brand just wants to put their name out there for a short period of time (quick gorilla marketing style)then sure, a runway show will be the way to go. However if a brand is more focused on making sales (which they should be) then entering a runway show in Nigeria may be close to being pointless.

Runway shows in more advanced countries have a large portion of their chairs filled with fashion buyers and merchandizers, a career path which is still very foreign in Nigeria. Most of this fashion come to a show to check for what pieces they can buy stuff off the designer and take to the stores they either are employed in or for one they have been contracted to work for.

Therefore, a designer in those countries can afford to invest in a show because there exists a likelihood that they will get money back for their investment. However, in a country where little to no fashion  store wants to BUY off designer, the designer will spend a lot investing in a collection and still pay high dues for them to be sold. Here in lies the death of the concept of affordable wear to said designer.

In my opinion, hosting a truly enjoyable shopping party and inviting people with spending power will get designer a lot further than a runway show. That is of course for only designer who want to break even. Runway shows could come after the brand has solidified its financial standing  and the designer has money to spare for some fame".

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