Fashion Night Out: Just An Excuse To Drink?
Faux Charity Fashion’s Night Out Only Raised Imaginary Money
By Brian Moylan, 1:21 PM on Mon Sep 14 2009

Girl, we’re still in recovery from Fashion’s Night Out. Too bad the charitable arm of Anna Wintour‘s Make-People-Like-Me Tour 2009 didn’t translate into cash for retailers. But nobody cares because the party was that fierce.

It’s kind of like waking up in a strange man’s bed with white powder all over your nose, but not really caring about your lost dignity because you managed to weasel your way into the Jane Hotel and hobnob with famous people. WWD reports that traffic to stores in Manhattan was up 50 percent thanks to the parties and celebrity appearances, even though the amount of revenue taken in wasn’t up all that much.

Some consumers sought to connect, if not transact, with the designers making store appearances; others came to socialize and grab a drink, while a minority did actually shop. Several retailers told WWD that Fashion’s Night Out, during which more than 700 stores stayed open until 11 p.m. and offered events, celebrities and designers, did lift the day’s business. However, most emphasized the main purpose was to bring fun to the stores.

That’s right. Since no one has any money anymore, stores are no longer for shopping, they are for getting drinks from Olsen twins, spotting Posh Spice, and watching André Leon Talley lounge around in his latest tent and host a game show. We can now close all the nightclubs, we have stores!

Our favorite quote is from Brooks Brothers bigwig Claudio Del Vecchio:

We do a lot of events, and we generally don’t get a lot of business from them…The best thing about Fashion’s Night Out is that a lot of people came out and are still looking at shopping in a positive way, even if they didn’t shop.

Isn’t that like discharging an anorexic from the hospital and saying, “well, she now has a positive view of food, even if she’s still not eating.” Everyone has a positive view of shopping. Who doesn’t love shopping? We’d do it every day, if we could. The problem isn’t that people don’t like shopping, it’s that they have no fucking money! No matter how many times you trot Oscar de la Renta out to sing with Barbara Walters, Bette Midler, and Sarah Jessica Parker, we’re still not going to be able to afford the socks at his store. Until everyone can do something about that, all Fashion’s Night Out is going to be is just what the fashion world doesn’t need–another excuse to get drunk.

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