Just like most other major events, London Fashion Week Men's was cancelled amid concerns around coronavirus. But now it appears that Men's Fashion Week might take place after all - just online instead.
The British Fashion Council has announced that the previously cancelled menswear Spring Summer 2021 shows and also the womenswear 2021 shows will happen in the same week - merged into one collection of virtual fashion shows.
The BFC plans to launch its own digital platform which will host not just the mens and womens shows, but also digital showrooms, interviews with designers and even tailored webinars. It's a simplified approach that hopes to offer support and ease of access to the fashion and creative industries - which are two that have been hit hardest by the pandemic.
This gender-neutral, online event will also allow for renewed access to a typically highly exclusive event. Fashion show invite lists are limited, there's only so many available seats, but an online show can be viewed (theoretically) by anyone with an internet connection. And at this stage, the LFW virtual shows should be available to view by all - including the general public.
While London Fashion Week womenswear normally takes place twice a year in February and September, the virtual shows will run during the normal timing for the mens shows - June 12 to June 14 across a weekend.
Caroline Rush CBE, British Fashion Council Chief Executive said: “It is essential to look at the future and the opportunity to change, collaborate and innovate. Many of our businesses have always embraced London Fashion Week as a platform for not just fashion but for its influence on society, identity and culture.
"The current pandemic is leading us all to reflect more poignantly on the society we live in and how we want to live our lives and build businesses when we get through this. The other side of this crisis, we hope will be about sustainability, creativity and product that you value, respect, cherish. By creating a cultural fashion week platform, we are adapting digital innovation to best fit our needs today and something to build on as a global showcase for the future.
"Designers will be able to share their stories, and for those that have them, their collections, with a wider global community; we hope that as well as personal perspectives on this difficult time, there will be inspiration in bucketloads. It is what British fashion is known for.”
You'll be able to find the shows here on the London Fashion Week website which will be reimagined for trade and consumer launches. You can sign up to the LFW newsletter for updates.
It looks like the future of fashion is digital.