London Fashion Week future in jeopardy

Is the end of London Fashion Week in sight as New York pushes its dates back

The future of London Fashion Week is in jeopardy, with designers in New York planning to show their catwalk collections a week later from February 2009.

The two fashion weeks currently run consecutively bi-annually, with a day in-between for buyers and press to fly from New York to London.

However, with New York planning to show seven days later next year, London would be left with just four days instead of six to cram in all the runway presentations.

Why the squeeze? America’s designers say they need an extra week to finish their collections due to time constraints brought about by the fabric mills in Italy and public holidays.

‘We have no choice. This is not an arbitrary decision,’ the executive director of the Council of Fashion Designers of America says. ‘I am respectful of every city’s needs… Maybe the first day of London could be for local designers.’

Hmm, let’s see what the Brits make of that plan.

Hilary Riva of the British Fashion Council has come out fighting.

‘It’s very easy to say that London could be shorter. But we’re the least strong city financially, and cutting short the week would further reduce our ability to bring in revenue.’

Report from Carla Bevan in New York

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