Behind the curve, the closed world of haute couture calls in the geeks

However, this week in Manhattan, the Paris-based atelier Givenchy will be shaking things up a little. The familiar faces of the “frow” will take their places as usual, via a separate entrance, and behind the ranks of stylists and critics will be 200 local fashion students, invited to attend by the label’s creative director, Riccardo Tisci. Then, in an unprecedented move, the esteemed 63-year-old French fashion house, founded by French aristocrat Count Hubert de Givenchy and now owned by LVMH, will open the doors of its spring show to 820 members of the public on a first-come, first-served basis. It is a sign that the fashion industry is now not just about selling clothes, but is slowly integrating with other sectors to form part of a more nebulous industry of luxury-entertainment experiences. “The first myth to dispel is that the fashion industry is ahead of the curve,” says Sanderson. “It is, ironically, exactly the opposite. Most fashion businesses are extremely conservative and very reactionary. Thankfully, we are now slowly witnessing a long overdue cross-fertilisation of fashion, tech and leisure – and this is really making things very exciting.”

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