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  • Writer's pictureMikahila Bloomfield

Designers Going the Distance for Your Dollars

Destination runway shows drive sales for brands.

Jacquemus Spring/Summer 2022 collection in Hawaii destination runway show
Jacquemus Spring/Summer 2022 collection in Hawaii. (Photo Credit: Getty/Darryl Oumi)

When Paris and Milan-based luxury brands decide to fly models, stylists, photographers, journalists, influencers, and celebrities across the world for 15-minute fashion shows, they get immediate media coverage. Critics have pointed out that destination runway shows are an environmentally deleterious, albeit glamourous, choice that designers are indulging in for the sake of possibly increasing product sales. “Bringing half the fashion world to Rio for 48 hours for a cruise show was beautiful, but it was probably a bit too much,” says Antoine Arnault, executive committee member at LVMH, which owns Louis Vuitton and Dior, speaking with Bloomberg in December 2020. “Maybe we ourselves have been swept into this whirlwind, to always want to offer something novel, extravagant.”

According to the newly released Lyst Index for Q2 2022, adeptly executing destination runway shows and events can create a major brand moment, which in turn helps generate sales for the brand. "While some have questioned the ethics of flying guests thousands of miles for minutes of runway action, a 'wow' fashion show location guarantees a spectacle and even more content creation opportunities for invitees," explained Lyst. "This quarter's Index proves there is huge brand value in claiming a memorable IRL moment."

However, destination shows are a delicate dance in PR strategy. Milan-based Gucci produced a Los Angeles junket which generated social media impressions and press mentions worth an estimated $33 million, according to Launchmetrics. Yet, Jacquemus’ destination show this March garnered much less online buzz when compared to the designer’s prior shows in France — some attribute this dip to the time difference between Hawaii and key global markets as well as a very small guestlist for the in-person audience.

What do you think of destination runway shows? Leave a comment below. Follow Fashion League on Instagram, and subscribe to our newsletter for Faux or Fashion™ trivia, and the latest job postings from some of your favorite companies.

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