Topshop taking a break from London Fashion Week

by Danielle Wightman-Stone
12 Feb 2018

British high street chain Topshop will be “taking a pause” from the London Fashion Week schedule this season, the retailer has confirmed.

The brand said in a short statement: “Topshop will be taking a pause from the London Fashion Week schedule this season. The brand remains committed to the development and support of emerging and established talent and will be hosting the Topshop Showspace.”

This will be the first time since it made its London Fashion Week debut in 2005 that Topshop and its Unique collection hasn’t been part of the official schedule. Its catwalk shows had become one of the biggest draws in London, with high profile editors including Anna Wintour sitting front row alongside Philip Green and celebrities such as Kate Moss and Olivia Palermo.

Topshop will still have a presence during fashion week as the retailer is continuing its ongoing sponsorship of Fashion East, as well as hosting the collective in the showspace. Its venue will also showcase a roster of designers including Molly Goddard, Preen by Thornton Bregazzi, House of Holland, Shrimps and Nicopanda.

It is hardly surprising that Topshop has an announced a “pause” from the catwalk, the retail group Arcadia has been undergoing a few challenges in the past few months, including a drop in sales, requesting a 2 percent discount from suppliers , as well as beginning a consultation on a major business restructuring, which could put hundreds of manager roles at its stores at risk, which it claimed was in response to the “ever-evolving fashion retail landscape”.

Topshop not showing at London Fashion Week this season

In addition, there have been a number of changes at the top of the retail group, including Topshop’s long-standing managing director Mary Homer leaving to join The White Company, with former Burberry exec Paul Price replacing her. While both Kate Phelan and Gordon Richardson left their roles as creative directors of Topshop and Topman, which led to the appointment of David Hagglund to take up the creative reins for both brands.

On Hagglund’s appointment, Philip Green chairman and owner of Arcadia, said: “The appointment of David Hagglund, in the newly combined role, continues to mark the start of a new era for Topshop Topman in moving both brands forward in their ongoing global expansion.”

The latest addition was Anthony Cuthbertson as global design director for Topshop and Topman. Cuthbertson, who was most recently design director of Just Cavalli and previously served as the creative director of Australian denim and contemporary label Sass and Bide, joined the fashion retail group in January and oversees a design department comprising of more than 70 employees.

It seems that its London Fashion Week catwalk show is the latest cost-cutting measure after the retail group saw its total profits fall 79 percent in 2016 following the fall of BHS and its ongoing pension scandal.

Images: Topshop SS17 collection, Catwalkpictures