Was there a touch of divine intervention at Balenciaga on first day Rosh Hashanah?

By Jan Shure
October 1, 2011

Was I the only (Jewish) person on Planet Fashion who wondered whether there was a spot of divine intervention going on in Paris during Fashion Week when not one but three benches – and front row benches at that – collapsed during the Balenciaga show, which took place on the first day Rosh Hashanah.

I do, of course, sympathise with the fashion capitals – London, Milan and New York as well as Paris – whose organisers all try desperately to fit in all four spring/summer fashion weeks, which take place annually in September, without clashing with Rosh Hashanah or Yom Kippur. Some years it’s easier, when the High Holydays fall late, as the four fashion weeks can usually be crammed in. But often rows erupt between organisers and buyers and journalists when one or other city tries to schedule major shows on Rosh Hashanah or Yom Kippur.

Two years ago it was London that offended, scheduling shows on the Yom Kippur and provoking the wrath of some senior fashion editors and ensuring that many top US buyers would be absent.

This year, unusually, Paris offended, scheduling a handful of top shows on first day Rosh Hashanah. It was an odd move for a capital where there many people in key positions are Jewish, and where American buyers, many of whom are Jewish, are seen is vital to a fashion house’s success.

Perhaps next September, the Balenciaga bench debacle will prove a salutary reminder not to schedule shows over the High Holy days.


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