Christmas has come and gone for another year and for the most part it went off without a hitch- my family exchanged gifts and then my dad slaved away cooking an amazing Christmas lunch. We all ate too much, indulged in drink and were too tired for anything else. There wasn't a whole lot of 'family time' so I was able to do some important things like enroll in courses for my honours program, as well as recharge my batteries by listening to some podcasts about blogging. That lead me to create a twitter account (and I have absolutely no idea what I am doing...) and discover through following various accounts that there had been rumor that Meadham Kirchhoff who I've written about on numerous occasions on this blog, wouldn't be showing at London Fashion Week next season. Since then a spokesmen from the brand had dispelled fears that Meadham Kirchhoff would not be closing down, but rather that Ben Kirchhoff and Ed Meadham were "figuring out the right way forward". Whatever that means.
So for now they are still scheduled to present their Fall collection for 2015 but for avid fashion followers and bloggers this was a brush with death and bone-chilling news. What's surprising to hear is that they cited a lack of funds as the reason for pulling the plug on what is sure to be an extravagant show and highlight for London Fashion Week. How could this happen? Meadham Kirchhoff have a huge online following, not just in London but around the world. Boys and girls my age who can't afford to buy pieces from their collections fawn over their vision and make moodboards as a kind of shrine or testimonial of our love. The sample sails stuffed with archive pieces are the stuff dreams are made of (alas I am stuck on the other side of the world in Melbourne, Australia) and some of the pieces created for their Topshop collaborations sold out in minutes.
How is it possible that a brand as creative and much-loved as Meadham Kirchhoff could struggle to find the funds for a runway show? It's sadly a reflection on the realities of the fashion industry in which creatives still play second fiddle to brands like Abercrombie & Fitch. I know I can't equate two brands with different marketing techniques and business models but it makes me blood boil seeing so many basic pieces churned out season upon season, some of which ends up in landfill. We can't do away with clothes. They are a necessity and the armor to human survival. But I question whether supporting commercial companies and immoral CEOs should take precedence over supporting the designers we really love. If you really love a brand buy direct from them. If you can't afford it buy second hand pieces or alternatively a DIY but always reference the original source. We should also buy tickets to see them at London Fashion Week.
All of these things directly benefit the designers and allow them to continue their craft, but that is by no means an assurance of their success. Let this be a wake-up call and much needed reminder to support and cherish all of the designers you love. Their existence is as fragile as a human's life and they are not immune from the harsh realities of today's industry. Please remember to nurture the talents of the fashion industry's best and brightest without which they do not have a future.
1- unknown, all other images Style Bubble in head to toe Meadham Kirchhoff.