The Autumn/Winter 2018 show was originally scheduled to take place on February 14 2018 and had been seen by some industry insiders as an opportunity for the label to repair the tarnish of its close association to the Harvey Weinstein scandal.
Speaking to the New York Post, a fashion insider said the show may still go ahead, but in a digital format instead of a physical presentation. That way Chapman would be able to avoid making a public appearance and therefore having to answer any potentially tricky questions about her soon-to-be ex husband.
Speaking about the cancellation, a brand representative also told the publication, “Marchesa is looking forward to presenting their Fall ’18 collection in an updated format this season.”
“Georgina couldn’t go through with it,” a source told The Post. “She was too scared.”
Despite denouncing her then husband’s behaviour in a statement, it seems Chapman’s reputation in the fashion industry has not yet recovered.
It’s difficult to prove for sure whether stars chose to out and out boycott the wearing of Marchesa to the Golden Globes thanks to the fact that correspondents were more focussed on the fact that stars were wearing black in support of the Time’s Up movement.
But according to Spotted, which tracks brands that celebrities wear by analysing paparazzi and social media photos, no stars have been spotted in the label since the scandal broke .
And there’s no denying that previous years have seen red carpets awash with stars in Marchesa designs.
Founded in 2004 by Chapman and friend Keren Craig, the high fashion label actually began in London, where the pair are from, before heading across the water to New York.
Named after socialite Marchesa Luisa Casati, the brand saw an astronomical rise within its first three years thanks to red carpet stamps of approval from A-listers such as Renee Zellweger, Cate Blanchett, Chrissy Teigen and Blake Lively.
Although details have since emerged about Harvey Weinstein allegedly coercing stars into wearing his then wife’s label.
Last month Jessica Chastain revealed that the disgraced producer once pressured her to wear a dress from the label, then taunted her when she refused.
The actress told WSJ Magazine that Weinstein had wanted her to wear Marchesa to the premiere of ‘The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby’, which was distributed by his company.
But according to People Chastain opted instead to wear an electric blue Atelier Versace gown.
Chastain went on to reveal that Weinstein had publicly chastised her for the decision to forgo the label when introducing the actress at a later event.
“He actually told the audience, ‘If I had to get in a boxing ring with Muhammad Ali or Jessica Chastain, I would choose Muhammad Ali,’” Chastain told WSJ Magazine.
Interestingly, while the A-list pack are seemingly overlooking the label, this doesn’t appear to have translated into a loss in sales.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Marchesa garments are still proving popular with the masses.
“My Marchesa business is fantastic,” says Neiman Marcus senior VP and fashion director Ken Downing.
That’s something that is echoed by owners of the Kinsley James Couture Bridal boutique in L.A. “In our minds and in the mind of our brides, Marchesa as a brand is not associated with [Weinstein],” Amber Silva, who co-owns the store with Dawn Silva Rigney told Hollywood Reporter.
Whether the luxe brand can survive the whole scandal remains to be seen, but it could well depend on the success of rebuilding it’s reputation in the eyes of Hollywood’s elite.
Of course there’s always a chance that Marchesa could ultimately benefit from some sort of upsurge in sympathy sales or showcasing support on the red carpet.
But equally the brand could find itself unable to recover from the whole association with the scandal that has rocked, not only Hollywood, but the entire world.
If the brand does choose to power on regardless their next tentative moves will be fundamental and must be meticulously made, but the cancelling of the physical NYFW show is proof that we might have to wait a while longer to see how it will all pan out.
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