Cost-cutting and fewer fashion parties in Milan

Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:05pm EDT
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By Marie-Louise Gumuchian

MILAN (Reuters Life!) - After eight days of frenzied shows and presentations, Milan fashion week officially ended on Wednesday, but the majority of the international press and buyers had already gone.

As the luxury goods sector also feels the pain of the global downturn, its fans and followers are also under pressure to cut costs when traveling to fashion capitals New York, London, Milan and Paris.

And Italian design houses are taking this into account.

Milan fashion week has usually seen the top names showing over a short number of consecutive days, but many catwalk regulars said the main part of this spring/summer 2010 womenswear week was particularly intense.

Shows for Giorgio Armani, Prada, Versace, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana among others were squeezed into a catwalk blur that ran from September 24th to 27th.

"Fearing that people would arrive late and leave early, (designers) all together went for the central four days," Mario Boselli, chairman of Italy's national chamber of fashion, said.

"Usually, the last day is the thinnest, this year it's the last two because some people left (on Monday) and (design houses) were scared and asked to change dates."

A last-minute shuffling of slots -- as the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur fell on September 28 -- meant fashion week's official calendar was only finalized a week before the event began.   Continued...

<p>A model poses backstage before Azara of Indian New Upcoming Designers Spring/Summer 2010 women's collection during Milan Fashion Week September 30, 2009. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini</p>