Is Social Media Ruining Fashion Week?

The Fashion Industry was the cool kid in school - that group that you so desperately wanted to be a part of. If you were considered 'popular' and 'cool' - then you were in! But, if you were the smart kid, the one that was a little bit different from everybody else - then you could forget about it. 

Of course times have changed and we live in a generation where being quirky and ‘uncool’ is the 'in thing'! What was once an unobtainable, secretive underworld, is now open to everyone - all thanks to Social Media.

Paris Fashion Week recently ended, and with very little effort I had access to every show and every bit of gossip I could get my eyes on! Why would I even consider leaving the country when I can enjoy every little exciting moment on my iPhone? No stressing about what I should wear, how I should look - no rushing between shows in 6 inch heels and no hyperventilating when I spotted the latest ‘it’ girl. I'm at work, sitting on my couch at home, taking the dog for a walk - all whilst I'm at Fashion Week.

But do we have too much access? Long gone are the days of tirelessly waiting for the shows to drop online or to be published in fashion journals; seeing all the celebs and wishing I had gone. I now have access to every single moment. 

What did Cara Delevigne eat backstage? Cara's probably '#TweetedWhatSheEated' already! The striking beauty took the very first runway selfie this year, taking to Instagram - she videoed herself strutting down the catwalk for Giles Deacon - capturing every moment a long her way.

What was perhaps supposed to be the latest thing of Social Media was somewhat of a lead balloon and a bit cringe really. You can see where the concept came from, we are living in a selfie-obsessed generation. But filming yourself walking down a catwalk? Does it not defeat the meaning Fashion Week? I can’t see any of the clothes - just Cara’s face.

Last year, Diane Von Furstenberg sent her models down the catwalk wearing Google Glasses. The idea was to film the show from the models perspective, but the unfashionable headwear left viewers confused and wondering if the glasses were part of the range. 

It goes without saying that Social Media being used at events like Fashion Week has endless positives. Non-stop promotion for your brand and a chance to engage directly with your consumer. Marc Jacobs created a great campaign using Social Currency where consumers could get their hands on his latest perfume in exchange for a single Tweet. Burberry also ran 'Art of the Trench' campaign, where fans would upload photos of themselves wearing their iconic Burberry trench coats - engaging existing buyers and appealing to the aspirational buyers.

Innovative campaigns like Marc Jacobs and Burberry utilise Social Media like never before and not at the expense of their credibility. I wonder whether designers banned mobile phones/tablets from their shows, that they would create and even bigger buzz? And bring back the ‘outside looking in’ element that Fashion Week once had.