For the 'I want' generation, 'see-now, buy-now' was a welcome addition to the traditional fashion buying system as big brands such as Burberry, Ralph Lauren, Topshop and Tommy Hilfiger jumped on board. But as David Pollard reports, some others have jumped off again.
London Fashion Week - time to talk not just of catwalk models - but business models. See Now, Buy Now a concept that's already been heard, but that's making noise again. As designers measure up the pros of offering clothes hot from showcase events like these .... With the cons. (SOUNDBITE) (English) FASHION DESIGNER JULIEN MACDONALD, SAYING: "It is a complete fashion joke." Though competitors perhaps didn't laugh at Tommy Now. The Tommy Hilfiger fast-fashion brand claiming a nine hundred per cent increase in traffic to its website, according to the New York Times. In the two days after launching a year ago. (SOUNDBITE) (English) DESIGNER, TOMMY HILFIGER, SAYING (SPEAKING FEBRUARY 2017): "It's listening to the consumer and the consumer wants immediate gratification, they want buy now, wear now, they want an experience and as a democratic brand we'd like to be able to be accessible, affordable, but very very relevant." But others - like Tom Ford - have abandoned the strategy. Raising question marks over whether it's a direction for the whole industry. Watchers say bigger brands have the financial backing to pull it off. Smaller players can struggle. (SOUNDBITE) (English) FASHION DESIGNER, HENRY HOLLAND, SAYING (on the 'see now, buy now model' ): "Once you've already started and you're already on the schedule it means doubling up or missing out on a season so it's very difficult to make the transition ... We are looking to how to figure it out but it's not as easy as it would be if I'd just started that way." And others see only hype. (SOUNDBITE) (English) FASHION DESIGNER JULIEN MACDONALD SAYING ABOUT THE "SEE NOW, BUT NOW" TREND: "It is just a gimmick of fashion designers to try to make more money from the customers. What happens is you see now, you buy now, you go to buy, not available. Do you know what? It is a marketing ploy to encourage people to engage into a brand they probably might not be interested in." A brand the industry can't avoid is Amazon. The online giant upping the stakes this season in a tie-up with Nicopanda. Aiming to offer clothes paraded in a show - with one-hour delivery. Fashion even faster as you See Now, Buy Now - and Get Now. In a cheeky new challenge to the industry.