It’s an understatement to say 2020 was a tough year for fashion. Department stores closed, indie labels shuttered, and consumer spending tanked. At times, the future of the industry seemed incredibly uncertain. Many of us even questioned its relevance: In the midst of a pandemic, a social justice uprising, and a looming climate crisis, what’s the point of new clothes?
This wasn’t the moment to throw up our hands in defeat, though. Designers who embraced change and viewed 2020 as an opportunity to redefine fashion’s importance, rather than diminish it, delivered some truly unforgettable moments. They gave us new ways to engage with fashion—through video games, livestreams, augmented reality, and even DIY experiments—and, in many ways, helped bring the business back down to earth. For the most part, we all experienced those moments the same way: safely behind our screens. It was a unifying and humbling exercise, and a reminder of what—and who—fashion is really for.
Despite the ongoing struggles, we’re confident fashion is changing for the better. This year accelerated many of the trends that needed to happen, especially when it came to inclusivity, diversity, and sustainability. As we look to 2021 with hope and optimism, we’re revisiting the moments that shaped 2020 and continue to push us forward.