COVID Restrictions Are Making New York Fashion Week Very Exclusive

New York Fashion Week organizers often employ a key statistic to justify all the fuss: the biannual event brings 230,000 people to the city and raises $532 million in visitor spending per year. But as the concerns about the ongoing pandemic and Delta surge slash guest lists and gut seating arrangements, this number will surely decline.

Labels like Tom Ford, Jonathan Simkhai, LaQuan Smith, Rodarte, and Christian Cowan have all cited reduced capacity when declining fashionistas who wish to attend their shows. Smith, who will be the first designer to host a runway at the Empire State Building, told WWD that only 150 people have been invited “compared to his typical 350” guests.

“It’s even more important to be exclusive at this time,” he told the trade. “Obviously, from a safety perspective, but also because it’s time to minimize and scale back, zero in on what’s

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