De­sign­ers flock to LA for red car­pet

China Daily (Canada) - - LIFE - By REUTERS in Los An­ge­les

Celebri­ties may have flocked to the front rows of the re­cent Lon­don Fash­ion Week shows, but some de­sign­ers are swap­ping the run­way for Hol­ly­wood’s awards sea­son red car­pets as the fash­ion world seeks new ways to draw at­ten­tion.

Ahead of Sun­day’s Os­cars cer­e­mony, the most-watched en­ter­tain­ment event around the world, Hol­ly­wood has been the set­ting for nu­mer­ous fash­ion events.

Bri­tish de­signer Stella McCart­ney threw a party show­cas­ing her lat­est col­lec­tion at famed mu­sic store Amoeba; Saint Lau­rent Paris took over The Pal­la­dium mu­sic venue for its menswear show; Gucci an­nounced a celebrity am­bas­sador; andKenzo de­buted a new­short film.

“It just feels like a mo­ment when mu­sic, film, fash­ion, the arts, it’s all just come to­gether for LA,” McCart­ney says at her pre­sen­ta­tion, at­tended by the likes of Katy Perry and Gwyneth Pal­trow.

Celebri­ties and fash­ion have long had a sym­bi­otic re­la­tion­ship, from Au­drey Hep­burn and Hu­bert de Givenchy to Jen­nifer Lawrence and Chris­tian Dior.

But Los An­ge­les tra­di­tion­ally is not re­garded as a trend­set­ting city as the year-round sunny weather doesn’t al­low sea­sonal cloth­ing changes as much as fash­ion cap­i­tals New York, Mi­lan, Paris and Lon­don.

That no­tion is slowly chang­ing. In 2012, Saint Lau­rent Paris moved its Parisian la­bel de­sign stu­dios to Los An­ge­les. Last year, Tom­Ford and Burberry pre­sented star-stud­ded run­way shows and Louis Vuit­ton held an ex­hi­bi­tion in­Hol­ly­wood.

The spot­light on Los An­ge­les comes at a time when brands are re­jig­ging the run­way-to-retail model and mak­ing new fash­ion avail­able faster to cus­tomers.

“Run­way shows don’t have same im­pact as they once did, mainly be­cause there’s so much of it and it’s over­crowded,” says Eric Wil­son, fash­ion news di­rec­tor of In­Style mag­a­zine.

The red car­pet, how­ever, watched by the en­tire world.

“Onered-car­pet hit at the Os­cars is equiv­a­lent to a year’s worth of mar­ket­ing for a de­signer,” Wil­son says.

Tom Ford last year moved his Lon­don Fash­ion Week pre­sen­ta­tion, sched­uled for af­ter the Os­cars, to Los An­ge­les ahead of the Os­cars.

“The world is even ob­sessed with celebri­ties ever be­fore,” Wil­son says.

This year, McCart­ney has scored nu­mer­ous hits onHol­ly­wood’s red car­pets: Ac­tress Lawrence donned a black pantsuit at the Os­car nom­i­nees lun­cheon, singer El­lie Gould­ing wore a blush pink gown to the Gram­mys and Taraji P. Hen­son wore a white strap­less dress when she won a Golden Globe for TV show Em­pire.

French brand Kenzo de­buted short film Snow­bird by film­maker Sean Baker fea­tur­ing its spring/sum­mer 2016 col­lec­tion with model-ac­tress Abbey Lee Ker­shaw, who starred in the Os­car-nom­i­nat­edMadMax: Fury Road.

“The weather, the rock-and-roll­ness of LA, it’s an al­lure es­pe­cially for the Euro­pean de­sign­ers,” Kenzo cre­ative di­rec­tor Hum­berto Leon says.

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