We’re well into fashion month (again), with London shows just finishing. As we breathe just before Milan, set to kick off in a few days’ time, we’re taking a look at some of the wildest fashion show invites we can recall.
Often representing a nugget of what’s to come, brands can choose to set the precedent for their upcoming shows and collections by crafting a unique or unusual show invite for attendees. With many ditching traditional paper invites, we’ve seen everything from objects to digital endeavours, food to immersive experiences passed off as invites. Spotting a theme or aesthetic within them is crucial – as it gives attendees a subtle hint or chance to predict the context and consistency of the show ahead. Let’s get into it.
This year, we’ve seen a couple of unconventional fashion show invites, but nothing overly wild. Balenciaga led the way, first sending out a broken iPhone invite earlier this year, which was said to symbolise use and neglect, and personalised with a message stating that it definitely no longer worked on the back – although I’m sure it was tried. More recently, they used a wad of Balenci-cash as an invite to their Resort show, held at the New York Stock Exchange. Fitting.
Back in AW19, Jacquemus invited guests to its show in the South of France with a loaf of freshly baked bread, which was a nice, edible touch. Fast forward the clocks a year, and Louis Vuitton used an LV-branded clock as its invite – which notably, only went backwards.
More widely though, lots of brands send out t-shirts as their invites. Some of our favourite iterations have been Off-White’s AW17 orange one, or Yeezy season 2’s vacuum-packed camo long sleeve back in 2015. The shrunken silhouette, combined with the peak of Yeezy’s (then) newfound hype and Instagram still being decidedly ‘casual’, ensured that this invite was perhaps one of the most Instagrammed of all time.
However, one brand known for its consistency in producing unusual or unconventional fashion show invites is Maison Margiela. For AW12, Margiela sent out a keychain-torch, which when pressed, projected the show details onto whatever surface you shone it on. For AW06, we saw the brand send out a credit card – with the card numbers replaced by dates and details, and AW08, Margiela-branded rizla. There was even apparently a dissolvable pill invite back in the 90s – but as it’s dissolvable nature suggests, there is no trace of it now.
Keeping things consistent and on-brand, almost all of Margiela’s invites have been kept minimal, coming in a monochromatic black and white. With brands still competing for reach, shareability and acclaim with their shows and collections, we can see the future of fashion invites continue to get, well, weirder in coming seasons. It’s anyone’s game.
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