Seasons, schmeasons. Thanks to retailers' see-now, buy-now strategy, waiting is so 2015. Gratifying or just greedy? Fashion News Editor Maxine Eggenberger charts fashion's latest phenomenon.
Psychoanalysed store layouts, strategically placed products and an ever-important presence on social media; retailers are forever coaxing us to buy, buy, buy, with many of us not giving the methods a second thought. I am one of those people. A shopaholic to the core, I’ve come to terms with the fact that my feeble mind can’t withstand the seduction of glossy in-store campaigns or the breadcrumb trail of must-have buys that lure me straight to the till. I’ve given in to the impulse.
However, in a time of increasingly turbulent sales, brands have gone back to the drawing board to discover new incentives that fuel the need to shop. Cue the see-now buy-now scheme.
Kick-started by Burberry at London Fashion Week, the Brit label enabled its customers to shop the looks mere minutes after the catwalk show, six months ahead of the usual collection release. It was an industry game-changer and, although it was simple in theory, Burb’s clientele responded in a big way. Unable to contain their excitement at snapping up the pieces straight away, the drop was a complete sell-out. The risk had paid off and, needless to say, the success of the see-now buy-now method didn’t go unnoticed…
Topshop Unique has since followed suit with its Runway-To-Retail initiative, which is set to roll out at LFW on 18th September. Marks & Spencer also adopted the principle after its AW16 press and blogger preview, making the collection available to buy straight after the reveal.
In a world where information is so readily available, it certainly seems like the next logical retail step. However, I worry we’re losing the romance of shopping in the process. I get that there’s the instant gratification of buying something you think sets you apart from the pack but, personally, I feed off the suspense of future buys. Like my meals, I’m constantly trying to work out where my next splurge is coming from – but where’s the fun in that when you’ve already bought the lot months in advance?
Are we losing the fun of the build-up, or will my inner shopaholic get a kick from both? Yeah, probably both.