Pin It
Diana Von Furstenberg AW16
Diana Von Furstenberg AW16Courtesy of DVF Archive, photographed by BFA

Disco-dancing models hit up Diane von Furstenberg

Eschewing a show for an ‘experience’, the House of DVF hosts a presentation-slash-party with Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner and Karlie Kloss

Yesterday, the house of Diane von Furstenberg flung open the doors to their headquarters in the Meatpacking District to usher in a new and experimental type of fashion presentation. People may have recognised the setting – complete with Andy Warhol’s portrait of Diane and other personal knick-knacks – from the E! network reality show House of DVF. “It’s all about bringing everyone back to the house, back to what the brand stands for, that we are a best friend in a woman’s wardrobe,” said von Furstenberg before the start of the DVF ‘experience’.  

Timed presentations incorporating sets have really flourished in the last few years – particularly in New York and London – with its format suited for younger designers because they are less expensive to stage than a traditional catwalk show. They’re especially advantageous for social media coverage because the models generally stay static for a longer period of time, enough to capture a compelling snap. 

“It’s all about bringing everyone back to what the brand stands for – that we are a best friend in a woman’s wardrobe” – Diane von Furstenberg

For Von Furstenberg though, presentations are nothing new. “Eighteen years ago, when I moved to West 12th Street, I would do these little vignettes and mise-en-scène. They had these themes with plants and birds. That gave me the idea to do them again now.”

As we walked through what felt a little like a DVF theme park, we were treated to models peeking in and out of doors and corridors in playful fashion, flouncing about an office like glamorous ‘working girls’ and then upstairs, the social media biggies – Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner and Karlie Kloss – putting out their best disco moves.

In rich shades of plum and purple, Diane’s girl went from day to night with flecks of the folkloric, ending up back where von Furstenberg’s heyday began, as Karlie Kloss had the last word with a Studio 54-appropriate gold sequinned wrap dress.     

Von Furstenberg was quick to assert that her decision to change up her show format had nothing to do with her role with the CFDA and its ongoing research project with the Boston Consulting Group to probe the industry on how the future of fashion shows should be shaped. “They’re two entirely separate things. My role with the CFDA is to help American designers to make better decisions and right now, we’re just gathering all the information. I will say though that the big shows have to be more consumer relevant.”  

To that point, a portion of this collection is available to buy immediately on DVF’s website. “We have to think about the consumer and if we show them too many things on social media too early, then they get confused and so we have to control the images.” It doesn’t get more strategically controlled and consumer-directed than selling the black and white blocked lace slip dress Gigi wore. It remains to be seen whether social media clout directly translates into solid sales but for now, DVF’s stance gives us a glimpse into a see-it-buy-it-now fashion future.