Faster faster, cheaper cheaper : A study about how fast fashion brands have affected luxury brands

University essay from Högskolan i Borås/Akademin för textil, teknik och ekonomi

Abstract: Today it seems like fast fashion brands are affecting luxury brands. Have the fast fashion brands been ignored too long and have luxury brands failed at protecting their brand values?  Luxury fashion brands make collaborations with fast fashion designers, something that would have been unthinkable a long time ago. Luxury brands have increased their number of seasons, some have diffusion lines and others sell online on their own websites. Luxury brands and fast fashion brands are sold on the same streets, worn by the same customers and can be found in the same magazines. Once fast fashion brands were irrelevant for the luxury brands and they ignored them, but time has changed. Fast fashion has affected the luxury industry in several ways. “Fast design turnover”, “Limited-edition products”, “brand communication”, “celebrity products and brand endorsement”, “prestige retail location” and“co-branding with luxury fashion designers” are just examples of tactics fast fashion brands use to imitate luxury brands (Okonkwo, 2007). But luxury brands have characteristics that fast fashion brands don’t such as high quality, exclusivity, high prices, status, and offer highlevels of symbolic and emotional values (Tynan, McKechnie, & Chhuon, 2009). Common characteristics for fast fashion brands are trendy clothing, cheap, interpreted after fashion shows and the collections are delivered quickly (Plunkett, 2010). This study is of qualitative nature and the topic is under-researched academically, which makes it more interesting to explore. However, the fast fashion and luxury fashion has been examined by an extensive literature review. The fast fashion has been dominating the fashion industry in recent years. The purpose was to find out how fast fashion brands and luxury fashion brands were connected. Seven interviews were conducted with people working in the luxury industry. Luxury and fast fashion, consumers, e-commerce, seasons and collaborations will be explored in this paper. This dissertation will mainly focus on how the fast fashion already has affected luxury brands. The conclusion was that luxury brands have been affected by fast fashion brands in numerous ways, it seems to affect bigger luxury brands more than independent designers. Clearly, the luxury industry has been affected by the fast fashion industry.

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