The Role of the Designer

Examining the Changing Face of Fashion

Understanding the evolving dynamics of the role of the designer is crucial for navigating industry shifts. Often, we’ve been pondering a recurring question: Does it still make sense to keep an eye on luxury brands?

The so-called but no-more-so luxury brands. Or the once esteemed but now seemingly entangled in the pursuit of profit. Therefore, they change designers for short-term profit, to the point of sacrificing their legacy. It’s a reflection that delves into the core values of an industry now seemingly driven by financial gains rather than its intrinsic essence.

In one of our most recent posts, we wrote a thought we want to repurpose here. Indeed, a significant issue that requires additional investigation. In the ever-evolving landscape of fashion, where trends shift like sand dunes in the wind, algorithms emerge as a formidable force, reshaping the industry in unprecedented ways.

Fashion designer: from skills to loudness

But what are the consequences of algorithms?
One of the consequences of this transformation is the shifting role of the brand’s central figure: the designer. Alber Elbaz’s poignant observation sheds light on this evolution:

“We designers, we started as couturiers, with dreams, with intuition. Then we became ‘creative directors’, so have to create but mostly direct. And now we have to become image-makers… Loudness is the new cool, and not only in fashion, you know. I prefer whispering.”

Alber Elbaz

Indeed, in today’s digital age, the clamour for attention on social media platforms necessitates a cacophony of noise from brands. Loudness has become the modus operandi to cut through the clutter of images inundating our feeds. In other words, social media has corrupted fashion.

Of course, recent developments follow this logic. Specifically, Maison Valentino appointed Alessandro Michele as the new creative director. That underscores the industry’s relentless pursuit of attracting young, social media-savvy audiences. And to the expenses of decades of legacy, consistency and beauty. While these individuals may possess an innate understanding of visuals, the question arises: Can they perceive the depth of quality, skills, and ability essential for authentic creative direction beyond surface aesthetics?

As we move forward in the fashion industry, it is crucial to reflect on the shift in the role of the designer. And question whether profit has eclipsed the industry’s once-revered artistic and creative integrity.

Leave a Comment