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Twice each year, hundreds of designers converge on Lincoln Center, the official home of IMG's Mercedez-Benz Fashion Week, to show their latest collections to eager buyers and editors. But some opt to skip out on the pomp and circumstance of the tents.
A handful of well-respected designers have begun to show at alternative venues a full day before the official schedule begins (traditionally on a Thursday), making the Wednesday before Fashion Week starts one of the best days on the calendar. We spoke with three of these designers—Rachel Comey, Lauren Moffatt, and Tanya Taylor— about why they choose stay out of the Lincoln Center spotlight.
"The calendar is very packed," said Rachel Comey, who staged her Fall 13 show at Manhattan's West Side Piers on Wednesday night.
Lauren Moffatt, who showed her line in a tiny studio above the iconic SoHo restaurant Fannelli's, also said her choice to show on Wednesday had a lot to do with the frenetic Fashion Week schedule. "It seemed like the obvious choice for us to show on that first unofficial day because we felt that maybe the competition for time slots wouldn't be as competitive," she told us.
Tanya Taylor, who was a breakout star last season, chose the Museum of Modern Art as the backdrop for her Fall 2013 presentation. "It's hard when you're new. Later in the week it's very hard to stand up to a designer that's had years of experience and expect a good audience."
Judging from the elbow-to-elbow crowd of A-list industry guests at Taylor's Wednesday night presentation, she got the audience she was hoping for.