Burberry to Host S/S 2021 En Plein

A “live physical presentation that is open for all to experience digitally.”

Since March, lock-down orders and a mounting curve of coronavirus infections have shrunk the daily parameters of life, upending the traditional fashion calendar as travel and social gatherings suddenly seem taboo for the global beau monde. As designers continue to see how recovery shakes out across the globe, many have breached traditionalism and taped the digital zeitgeist.

Burberry is one of the first to announce concrete plans for the Spring/Summer 2021 showings in the Fall. On September 17, 2020, the heritage house will host a “phygital” iteration of the usual goings – one that will be held en plein.  

Taking cue from June’s first-ever digitized London Fashion Week, Burberry will drop gender binaries, presenting a carbon-neutral, co-ed runway in the British countryside. “Now more than ever, we have to reimagine, to change,” writes chief creative officer Ricardo Tisci in a press release. “We’ve always been drawn to nature and today we look to the purity and simplicity of the outdoors – where our founder Thomas Burberry laid our foundations – redefining our fashion landscape through new forms of expression.”

As countries begin to ease social distancing measures and mend the economic fallout of the pandemic, a second-spread of infection remains front of mind as social gatherings risk spreading the virus anew. The UK has seen more than 303,000 positive coronavirus cases, and more than 42,000 deaths. Lockdowns are expected to soften this week, yet the government remains cautious as to too quickly resume something of a pre-Covid normalcy.

While Tisci’s excitement to “redefine” fashion’s landscape builds on the back of global unrest, it is a welcome change in a system too often predicated on tradition. Burberry’s runway will present following Paris’ couture show’s shift to digital, now slated for July 6-8.

Vogue’s Corey Tenold
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