Givenchy announced that it is presenting its Resort 2015 collection in Paris later this month. The Paris-based brand, which is under the creative direction of Riccardo Tisci, has presented the collection in New York for the past several years (see looks from its Resort 2014 collection, pictured below) and shot its lookbook in NYC, as well. Givenchy's CEO Sebastian Suhl spoke about the location change, saying that moving back to Paris is in line with the house's efforts to focus more on retail and center its sales and operations efforts in Paris. An abrupt change in direction this is not, as a major push at the house has been underway since Suhl joined as CEO in 2012. (Think: the appointment of the house's first ever US-specific president, the opening of its only US-based store, and plans to roll out nearly 30 brick and mortar stores in the near future).
It seems Givenchy is the outlier here, as an array of established houses have been taking their mid-season collections to exotic locales over the past two months; Chanel showed its Cruise collection in Dubai and restaged its most recent Pre-Fall "Paris Dallas" collection in Tokyo. Givenchy's fellow Louis Vuitton subsidiaries, Louis Vuitton and Céline also showed on location, in Monaco and Shanghai, respectively, with Céline restaging its Fall 2014 collection in the Far East. Balenciaga, under the relatively new direction of Alexander Wang, rather unsurprisingly re-showed its Spring collection in Beijing. The Kering-owned house reportedly tapped Wang following long-time creative director Nicolas Ghesquière’s departure, in part, due to Wang's connections to China and its desire to expand in the East. Other brands, such as Burberry and US-based affordable luxury brand, Michael Kors, staged shows in Shanghai to celebrate the launch of new stores there. Last but certainly not least, Dior showed its women's Cruise collection in Brooklyn and its Homme Autumn collection in New York last month.
While it seems that Givenchy is out of the loop in terms of its showing of Cruise at home, there are, in fact, a handful of bigger labels that also chose not to galavant in a new location this season. Marc Jacobs, for instance, showed his resort collection in a small press show in New York; this marks his first Resort collection since leaving his position as long-time Louis Vuitton creative director. Moreover, Bottega Veneta, Kering's most luxurious label, showed its Resort collection in its showroom in Milan; Gucci, another Kering brand, followed suit.
Stella McCartney stayed in New York, but brought the fun, never the less, by way of a garden party at the Elizabeth Street Garden in Nolita, complete with lavender margaritas, a live band, statue performers, and the collection, of course. Last Resort, McCartney staged a carnival-themed outing, held alfresco in a Lower East Side cemetery with ring tosses and other games, lemonade stands, barbecue grills, and a New Orleans brass band. McCartney seems to be the best proof that smaller brands need not show on a man-made private island (a la Chanel) for a noteworthy experience.
Moreover, let's not forget that amidst such pomp and circumstance that the clothes are the most important element. This sounds obvious, but it is easy to forget in light of such extravagant settings and thanks to the sheer number of Resort collections being shown each year (Style.com has 100 collections up for viewing on its site at the moment; and WWD has even more). While Resort/Cruise/Pre-Spring collections (and in some cases, their presentation/show formats) are growing in terms of substance (more looks and more complete collections) and significance, there is a reason that emphasis is placed on these in-between collections, so to speak. These are the collections that stay in stores for the longest duration and often result in the highest sales. Thus, the collections are immensely important, especially for young brands. Let's remember that.