The fashion universe suffers, as do all facets and links of society, with the coronavirus. From East to West, Covid-19 arrived for the New York Fashion Week in early February. Soon after, it landed at Fashion Week in Milan, a show that even had a parade held with closed doors - which was considered an exaggeration by some people.
The virus, which had already shown signs of its strength by taking away important Chinese buyers of the world trade circuit from fairs and fashion shows, multiplied in Italy at the beginning of the year and soon after throughout Europe. The Paris Fashion Week still happened as planned. However, meanwhile, Italy has already imposed drastic measures of lockdown and quarantine in an attempt to contain the pandemic.
In Brazil the virus arrived in March and the quarantine started at the end of that month canceling important events in the fashion calendar, such as São Paulo Fashion Week (SPFW), which would take place between April 24th and 28th, in São Paul/SP.
It’s interesting to note that the coronavirus emerged from China, an important player in the scenario of world luxury consumption: China consumes 1/3 of the luxury items produced in the world. In view of the information, it’s impossible to remain indifferent to the current data that, for example, Ralph Lauren already estimates a loss of revenue between 55 and 70 million dollars in the fourth quarter in Asia. Gucci, the famous Italian brand, closed half of its stores in mainland China. And Burberry has closed 24 of its 64 stores in the Asian country.
The long expected world fashion events that were scheduled for the first semester were canceled. An example is Met Gala, which would take place in May and traditionally brings together designers, models and popular artists from pop culture. In Brazil, the April edition of São Paulo Fashion Week was canceled, but in an official note, the organization reported that the 50th edition, which celebrates 25 years of SPFW is kept for October 16th to 20th, 2020.
All help is welcome
To help in the fight against the pandemic, each brand and/or designer does what it can. Some examples are encouraging and reflect very well what certain brands are in its essence. Shutz (Campo Bom/RS) engaged in the fight against the coronavirus making exactly what it knows best: footwear. The brand made available to health professionals, especially woman doctors and nurses, pairs of white sneakers for work.
One of the largest footwear manufacturers in Brazil, Grendene announced the production and donation of 250 thousand kits composed of lab coat, cap, foot protector and facial masks for entities and public hospitals across the country. Another company in the footwear sector engaged in the movement is Vulcabras Azaleia (Parobé/RS), which produced and donated 400 thousand masks and 3 thousand pairs of shoes to Brazilian hospitals.
In the children's segment, Kidy (Birigui/SP) also made its contribution. The company directed its footwear production, in this moment of retraction of orders, towards the development of protective masks. Donations exceeded 95 thousand items for health agencies, nursing homes and military police. Ricardo Gracia, shareholder director, points out that people had no prospect of work for this period and the company worked to bring them back to work making protective masks.
The executive president of the Brazilian Association of Footwear Industries (Abicalçados), Haroldo Ferreira, highlights that the moment is to work for the benefit of society. “The mobilization of the sector is a kind of social counterpart for Brazil, a country that will certainly come out stronger and more human from this difficult moment that we are going through”, he comments. The movement is helping to raise awareness among more footwear companies, inspiring different actions throughout Brazil.
Around the world Famous in his country of origin, as well as around the world, the Italian designer Giorgio Armani made an expressive donation of 1.25 million euros to four hospitals and to Civil Protection in Italy in the fight against the coronavirus. This is the practical and effective way that the designer found to help in this difficult moment that the whole world faces.
The brand Bvlgari made an expressive donation to the research department of the Lazzaro Spallanzani hospital in Rome. The institution was the first to isolate the virus in just 48 hours, this allows studying and better understanding the structure of the coronavirus for better diagnoses, treatments and the development of a vaccine.