Well, this is a surprise. Alexander Wang, fashion darling and resident party boy, has announced that after showing the brand’s fall ’18 collection during New York Fashion Week in February, he plans to opt out of the official NYFW lineup for good and move his show and his signature #WangFest #Wangover-inducing after-party antics (previous blowouts have included strip poles, graffiti-tagged cars, fast-food trucks and performances from musicians like Cardi B, Ja Rule, Ashanti and Nicki Minaj) to the pre-collection calendar.
That means Wang will be presenting his collections in June (for deliveries to hit stores between October and March) and December (to hit stores between April and September).
“Our customer will be better-served through the new system,” CEO Lisa Gersh said in a statement. “The innovative approach reframes product on the month that it ships, rather than the outdated labels of ‘resort’ or ‘pre-fall,’ giving our customers more relevant and consistent merchandise throughout the year.”
“We have been exploring many different approaches to our product launches through collaborations such as Adidas Originals and special capsules to measure customer response,” Wang said in a release. “Our shows will reinforce our brand’s DNA to our global customers and fans while we continue to be focused in our product offering. This new cadence will allow us to speak to our global customer in different conversations that are not limited to just Fashion Week twice a year.”
This move is the latest in a string of NYFW departures (Rodarte, Proenza Schouler, Altuzzara and Thom Browne have decamped for Europe), and it arrives after the news that Public School is forgoing a runway show altogether in favor for a direct-to-consumer model, resulting in an alarmingly deteriorating list of big-name talents to show in New York. Fortunately, the CFDA already has something in the works to support Wang’s decision: An official summer/winter season might take place as soon as this June and December, according to WWD. But whether that will fix the Fashion Week calendar (or simply add to the chaos) remains to be seen.