A mostly-virtual New York Fashion Week kicked off Sunday.
With the exception of a few in-person runway shows, designers will stream their work through the official New York Fashion Week website.
The line-up includes a series of virtual presentations from traditional catwalks to short documentaries and panels.
Steven Kolb, CEO of the Council of Fashion Designers of America, told NY1 that going digital has inspired some ideas that will stick in the future.
“The public gets access to shows that they’ve never gotten before, and you have a broad, really deep international reach globally,” Kolb said on “Mornings On 1.” So you can reach press, buyers, in Asia that may not be able to come to New York, or Europe."
When in-person shows make a wider return, Kolb anticipates hybrid models where traditional shows are live but still have virtual components.
“I believe in live,” said Kolb. "You can’t replace live, but the two can sit side-by-side."
“The access is just unprecedented and I think that brands and designers presenting realize the power of the digital, and digital will always be a part of live,” he continued.
The fashion industry, a major economic force in the city, has taken a big hit from the pandemic. Retail stores were shut for a period of time and brands were stuck with inventory that they couldn’t sell. People were laid off and others faced salary cuts.
But Kolb has faith it will rebound.
“There’s resilience in fashion,” he said. "Fashion is about reinventing itself."