J.Crew at Fashion Week: Is Haute Couture Losing its Allure?

J. Crew

There is an unexpected newcomer to the Fashion Week scene, and it’s not The Situation’s new tuxedo line. In what may come as a shock to some couture aficionados, J.Crew has just announced their Fashion Week debut. The company has officially been slated to host a presentation from 9:30-10:30 September 13th.

So what does this mean for fashion week? Perhaps the once hyper-elite event is becoming more utilitarian, catering to well-funded mall brands. But maybe we’re not giving the label enough credit–perhaps J.Crew is legitimately realizing its dream of entering the world of high fashion. Probably a little bit of both.

The Fashion Week website features a scroll-through schedule of events for the week, and includes black and white photographs of the designers next to the details about their shows. The J.Crew time slot, however, stands out as a faceless entry, featuring the brand’s ubiquitous trademark in place of a photo. Intentional or not, the marked absence of a J.Crew face sends a stark message, and one that may sit uneasy with fashion purists.

Perhaps this a harbinger of Fashion Weeks to come, when The Brand will replace the faces of skillful designers.

Some more Marxist minded fashion may have a more optimistic view of the J.Crew development. Perhaps high-fashion is finally trickling down to the lay-people, becoming an affordable but refined commodity. Perhaps J.Crew’s presence will democratize Fashion Week, drawing a broader interest base.

But is the elite conceit of the event what makes it so appealing? Can Fashion Week still be Fashion Week with big brands showing off their wares?

J.Crew at Fashion Week: Is Haute Couture Losing its Allure?