Yesterday, Mary-Kate Olsen and Ashley Olsen showed their Spring/Summer 2016 collection in Paris. This is noteworthy primarily because the twin sisters usually show their collections in New York, where a large portion of their garments are made. The move to Paris this season raises a lot of questions, including: why Paris and also, is Paris their permanent new fashion week home or is this just a one-season thing (a la Givenchy showing its Spring/Summer 2016 collection in New York)? What we know by way of answers is this: The move was “strategic,” Mary-Kate told the New York Times’s Vanessa Friedman. It was not the result of delayed garments, which is what forced the 29-year old twins to show in Paris for S/S 2011. The 29-year old design darlings elaborated just a bit, telling Vogue's Suzy Menkes, "It is essentially an event for [our] loyal clients” – roughly 30% of which are internationally based.
As for whether they will stay in Paris for fashion week next season or return to New York, the girls are pretty tight-lipped. “We’re opening our new store in Manhattan early next year. We’ll have to see how the timing works out,” Mary-Kate said.
Interestingly, you may have noticed another difference between the girls’ prior shows and the one they put on this week: the absence of official collection photos press on Vogue Runway (formerly Style.com), NowFashion and the like. While guests posted photos on their social media accounts, that was the extent of it for The Row S/S 2016. WWD has posted a review – sans photos – with the following note: “The Olsens insist on distributing their own in-house images, shot the morning after the press presentation, delaying illustrated coverage.” Those photos have not yet been released.
The trade publication also noted of the twins’ presentation: "The staging was elegantly understated, as the Olsens presumably reserved a grander display for the clients who were scheduled to view it on Wednesday night at the 17th-century Château de Courances, an hour outside Paris. No media was allowed at the dinner per the designers’ authoritarian position on photography, which extended to the press presentation."
The S/S 2016 collection photos are here …