June 6, 2021 / Source: The Bizz USA
By Malita Zara Ali ; Edited by Haarika Kalahasti
It’s been over a year since the COVID-19 pandemic hit the world in March 2021. Who would’ve thought this crisis would last a whole year? Most of us were hoping for normality, however, with more infectious mutation of the virus and a delay in vaccination programs, normality is far from us all.
The COVID-19 pandemic affects the global fashion industry as governments close down manufacturing plants, stores and event cancellations to slow the spread of the virus. Fashion executives are planning a range of scenarios and hoping for a speedy global recovery. However, amid increasing pressure on performance, shifting consumer behaviors, and accelerating demand for digital commercial, it is imperative to act properly to prepare for the next normal.
Influencers and Celebrities Rally:
While “non-essential workers” are at home, influencers and fashion celebrities have taken it upon themselves to help contribute. For instance, Stylists Anna Rosa Vitello and Bettina Looney coordinated a wardrobe “clear-out” on their respective Instagram stories, to raise money for both Doctors Without Borders and Help Them Help Us charities.
Fashion Brands Cancel Orders in Bangladesh:
Due to the closure of stores and decrease in sales, Forbes claims western fashion brands have canceled over $2.8 billion orders from Bangladeshi suppliers, potentially sparking a humanitarian crisis. At least 1.2 million workers in Bangladesh have been directly impacted by order cancellations and thousands of factories and suppliers who have lost their contracts.
Luxury Brands Donation:
Despite the impact Covid-19 was predicted to have on the market, fashion houses like; Dolce and Gabbana, Versace, and Prada are stepping in to donate in this time of crisis.
'During this global health crisis, we must all be responsive to the urgent needs of our global communities,' the Chairman and President of the Tiffany & Co. Foundation, Anisa Kamadoli Costa, later added that the company will be donating $750,000 to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for the World Health Organization.
Fashion Shows Cancelled and Events Go Online:
Many influencers, celebrities, and other fashionistas look forward to traveling abroad and experiencing runaway shows. However, during the penultimate week of the 2020 Fashion season, COVID-19 made its way from Asia to Europe, and Milan fashion week was directly impacted.
A year into the pandemic, the Milan fashion week went virtual, having participants log into the show to view it. No sharply dressed crowds attended the extravaganza's opening, a virtual catwalk that brooded cased Prada and Armani new women’s collection of the Autumn and Winter 2021-22.
Predicted Financial Losses for Fashion Brands:
With non-essential stores closed and job losses abundant, it is not surprising that fashion brands are experiencing financial losses due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Michael Burke, chief executive of Louis Vuitton, said “the year of 2020 will go down in the history books as the year fashion nearly died”. Fashion and luxury faced a whopping decline of $600 billion in sales in 2020. With that being said, we know that high in style fashion brands are facing major losses, but could you imagine the impact on small businesses? Many had to start running them from their homes and online or even completely shut down.
Now, as we can see the fashion industry has been greatly affected, especially small businesses. Smaller businesses are feeling this pressure, as many push for innovative ways to help improve their financial losses and to meet consumer demands. Many now have their own face or “COVID” line and attempt to stay up to date with the recent trends. Shopping at your small or local stores or advertising to friends and on social media, can help smaller businesses.