Rebecca Minkoff has used New York Fashion Week as a showcase for innovation, and I’m not talking about her fashions. Last year at this event, Minkoff became the first designer to broadcast her runway show in virtual reality. Last spring, the fashion house introduced a “buy now, wear now” format -- showing spring collections in the spring and fall ones in the fall, a seemingly logical decision that was actually a bit of a revolution in the fashion industry.
"The minute Instagram...became important, the consumer was getting frustrated and angry because she sees something but is confused she has to wait this long" before it's available to purchase, Rebecca Minkoff explains. "Or a fast fashion retailer knocks me off couple days after show. Both ends of spectrum—between frustrated consumers and the fact its copied right away, that cycle was definitely not going to be fixed by doing it the old way" of runway fashions not being widely available at retail until several months later.
Ahead of Fashion Week, I spoke with Rebecca, and cofounder and brother Uri Minkoff about disrupting the industry, embracing technology, the challenges and opportunities of running a family-owned business, and how the tragedy of 9/11 helped give Rebecca her first big break.