(Fixes spelling of Pinterest in penultimate paragraph)
By Li-mei Hoang
LONDON Feb 12 London Fashion Week will showcase
the British capital's reputation for creativity and digital
innovation when it opens on Friday, amid signs the global luxury
market is strengthening.
Fashion favourites such as Burberry, Paul Smith and Tom Ford
will vie with edgy youth labels Christopher Kane, Peter Pilotto
and Simone Rocha in catwalk shows and presentations.
"London is the most creative and experimental of cities. It
is all about emerging talent and new ideas," said Helen David,
fashion director at luxury department store Harrods.
The number of luxury goods consumers is set to rise to 440
million in 2020 from 380 million now, according to a study by
luxury goods association Altagamma and consultancy Boston
Consulting Group. Two-thirds of growth in the luxury market over
the next decade will be organic, as sales volumes generated in
the same stores rise year-on-year, the study found.
More than 5,000 buyers and journalists from around the world
are expected to attend the five-day London event, which brings
in an estimated 100 million pounds ($164.84 million) of orders
each season, two thirds of which are from international buyers.
"We're seeing a lot of spend coming from international
tourists, so lots of Chinese, Russian, Middle Easterners come to
London, particularly to shop for luxury," said Fflur Roberts,
Head of Global Luxury Goods at research firm Euromonitor
More than 80 designers are expected to show collections
featuring bold punchy colours for autumn/winter 2014, as well as
monochrome patterns already in vogue, industry experts say.
"Last season's pastels will be replaced with bright colours
and shades of purple and magenta will be key," said David.
"We have also seen a variety of jewel shades, and monochrome
looks set to stay a key focus for everything from daywear
through to gowns for the new season."
Forty of the shows will be live-streamed, while Topshop will
host the first live 3D installation, enabling global viewers to
see the catwalk show from all angles in virtual reality.
Topshop's show will also be open to the public, instead of
just the fashion press and buyers.
"The philosophy of Topshop has always been to democratise
fashion," Sheena Sauvaire, the company's Global Director of
Marketing & Communications, told Reuters.
"Not only is it brands like us that are opening up the
fashion world but technology is giving access to everyone. We're
allowing everyone to get involved and have some fun," she said.
The British Fashion Council will mark the start of London
Fashion Week on Valentine's Day with a social media campaign
called #LoveLFW. Fans will be encouraged to share their
favourite images, runway look or campaign, which will be
featured on a Pinterest board and shared on Twitter.
Twitter followers will also be able to join Q&A sessions
with guest Tweeters, who will respond via six-second video clip
on social platform Vine.
($1 = 0.6067 British pounds)
(Additional reporting by Brenda Goh; Editing by Alistair Lyon)