At nursery school every child in the English-speaking world learns the same things: the days of the week, the alphabet, numbers until ten and the seasons of the year.
Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall (or Autumn, if you are in the UK). Every year, the same cycle, one season after the other, in the never-ending circle of life.
However there are a few days between each season when the weather has not quite flipped yet; in the past we would have just carried a cardigan or mac out with us in the morning, in case it was not quite as warm as expected. This arrangement has worked for everyone since time immemorial. After all, even before fashion was an industry human beings have been very competent at dressing ourselves for the weather.
But the fashion industry is never satisfied. Four seasons?? Pah! That’s for nursery school kiddies.
Traditionally the fashion calendar has defied the natural laws of nature, and operated with two main season: Spring/Summer, and Fall/Winter, that’s why there are only two major fashion weeks. Fall clothes started showing up in store in late-summer, and spring outfits started popping up around Easter in your favourite retailers. It makes sense.
Then we started getting different collections per season, even though the difference between Spring and Summer is often just a light jacket- but still everyone was happy, more seasons equals more interesting clothes and more ways to express ourselves through our clothes, right? Right….
And then suddenly four seasons just weren’t enough. And so the ‘Pre’-season collection was born. Pre-fall is to Autumn/Winter what the ‘Resort’ collection is to Spring/Summer. The Gloss refers to it as a seasonlet, “quickly-becoming-official addition to the fashion calendar.”
The collections are smaller and tend to be more commercial than some of the stuff designers will show at the main fashion weeks. The romantic in me thinks that pre-fall and resort collections are a chance for ordinary people to have access to high end fashion, and for designers to bring their creations to a wider audience. The cynic in me thinks its a chance to get accessible clothes on the shelves as the weather cools but the main collection is still in manufacturing.
It is definitely a major hit with the press (ahem), because we just love clothes, and pre-fall collections let us get a good idea of what’s to come.
I particularly enjoy pre-fall because I find haute-couture or fashion week a little inaccessible for regular peeps like you and me….And more clothes to play with.
So now you know…..