Pre-Fall 2018: What Does the Season Really Mean?

- - Fashion Shows
Erdem Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Erdem Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

In the world of fashion, pre-fall is many things.

It’s the longest-running season, opening to buyers and press in November and wrapping up on the heels of spring couture in January. Generally, pre-fall collections offer more commercial looks than the main runway seasons, giving retailers the opportunity to present new merchandise to their customers between the fall and spring collections. It has also become the most important sales season with merchandise sitting on the sales floor for up to six months. But in today’s world, it is also becoming increasingly difficult to define the season, as designers show various interpretations of what exactly “pre-fall” means.

Tory Burch Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Tory Burch Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

The name (pre-fall) alludes to autumn, but the deliveries hit stores in the beginning of summer. Designers present everything from fur coats to cotton eyelet dresses and everything in between. So the terminology is confusing to everyone – designers, retailers, and consumers – so shouldn’t the season be looked at as a transitional one? Shouldn’t it be a season that offers a variety of weights and styles to satisfy both a customer looking for a summer outfit in July that they can transition into fall, as well as someone buying a coat or knit that they can wear through the colder months?

In additional to addressing transitional weather, pre-fall can also be a prelude to the next runway collection; an opportunity to test what works and doesn’t work with clients. For many designers, pre-fall can help lay-out the groundwork for many of the shapes and ideas that appear in the following season.

On an ethical note, there are just too many clothes out there; designers are producing too much instead of considering the outcome. So many designers are churning out ‘bestsellers’ and collections that have no point or value to the system; stores are buying them to keep up with the never-ending seasonal trends. It leads to the same clothes in all the stores with less than stellar sales.

So while many in the industry ponder on what the season means to them and how the pre-fall model varies for every designer, here are some of the highlights from the Pre-Fall 2018 season so far:

YARN IT ALL

Miles beyond the plain –Jane sweater, a wonderful tactile world of cozy knits await from chic sweater dresses to feminine sweaters.

Canel Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of Vogue.Com)

Chanel Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of Vogue.Com)

Pringle of Scotland Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Pringle of Scotland Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Prabal Gurung Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Prabal Gurung Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Victoria Beckham Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Victoria Beckham Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

PRINTS CHARMING

Designers are making a case for head to toe prints this season as patterns are mixed in fun and playful ways.

Gucci Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Gucci Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Altuzarra Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Altuzarra Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Fendi Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Fendi Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Versace Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Versace Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

SHIRT CIRCUIT

In a nod to the classics, the white button down shirt gets a fresh make-over this season.

Milly Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Milly Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Brock Collection Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Brock Collection Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Rag & Bone Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Rag & Bone Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

A.L.C. Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

A.L.C. Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

TOTALLY EIGHTIES

Designers dug deep into the archives and pulled out bright colors and body-conscious silhouettes.

Jonathan Simkhai Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Jonathan Simkhai Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Balmain Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Balmain Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Naeem Khan Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Naeem Khan Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Koché Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of Vogue.Com)

Koché Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of Vogue.Com)

BEASTIE GIRLS

Things got plenty hairy this season in the form of oh-so-cozy yet beastly furs (in both real and faux).

Givenchy Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Givenchy Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Sonia Ryliel Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Sonia Ryliel Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Oscar de la Renta Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of Vogue.Com)

Oscar de la Renta Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of Vogue.Com)

Gucci

Gucci Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Gucci Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Carolina Herrera Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Carolina Herrera Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

SUMMER LOVIN

Then there are the designers who want to hold on to summer offering sweat little dresses to keep cool and look fresh.

La Vie Rebecca Taylor Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

La Vie Rebecca Taylor Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

See By Chloe Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

See By Chloe Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Sea Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

Sea Pre-Fall 2018 (Photo Courtesy of the Designer)

WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THE PRE-FALL SEASON AND HOW SHOULD YOUNG DESIGNERS APPROACH THE SEASON?

 

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Antonia Sardone

Antonia Sardone

Antonia Sardone is a new contributor to the University of Fashion. She is also a freelance fashion consultant, stylist and writer. Antonia Sardone graduated from the Fashion Institute of Technology with a degree in Advertising Communications, Marketing and Fashion Journalism. She is an industry veteran having worked for WWD for over fifteen years and has strong relationships with designers worldwide. Today, Antonia Sardone continues to write reviews for WWD as well as work with many contemporary designers on a variety of projects from helping to re-launch their websites to writing their brand books. She enjoys raising her children to be creative individuals, as well as styling, writing and traveling.