Feuds and Followers at New York Fashion Week

Stephen Tornetta
September 19, 2018

In case you missed the recent influx of fashionable lewks on your social feeds, last week was New York Fashion Week (NYFW). It’s always a luxurious time for me to revel in the new trends and fashions coming down the runways. (Christian Siriano, one of the hottest brands on the red carpets these days, says lime green is the new black and I’m here for it!)


The fashion industry is typically one season ahead when they show their latest collections, meaning that during this past NYFW, designers debuted their spring/summer 2019 collections. I know, it’s confusing! We haven’t even experienced fall/winter 2018, yet we’re already on to spring/summer 2019? Fashion is fickle. That’s why I LOVE IT!

But, with all these new designs hitting the runways, how did brands utilize advertising to share these new collections with the world? There are the obvious methods of magazines and other print advertising, but brands also utilized more subtle social media tactics to highlight their latest creative aesthetics. 

That’s where people like Kendall Jenner, Gigi HadidNicki Minaj, and Cardi B come in. 

Here’s how it works: Designers invite these influencers (both celebrity and some non-celebrity) to their shows, often them gifting clothes to wear, too. 

From there, Kendall and Gigi share themselves wearing these articles of clothing—often from the latest collections—and then people like you and me go out and buy purple lace up mini dresses from Longchamp



or this yellow jumpsuit from Brandon Maxwell.



From the perspectives of Longchamp and Brandon Maxwell, it’s all a no-brainer. Access to Kendall’s 95.3 million followers and Gigi’s 43.2 million followers expands their brand to tons of new audiences. 

However, there was a bit of extra, unexpected publicity for some brands last week. After the Harper’s Bazaar ICONS event, rappers Cardi B, wearing Dolce & Gabbana (a well-known brand) and Nicki Minaj, wearing Alexandre Vauthier (a lesser-known brand), got into a physical altercation that included Cardi B throwing her shoe at Nicki. Scandalous!

Whether you’re team Cardi or team Nicki, Twitter analytics show us that after the fight, Twitter volume for both Cardi B (as well as Alexandre Vauthier) jumped dramatically. (Sorry, Dolce & Gabbana—not as much love for you this time.)

On Sept. 8 (the day of the fight), Cardi’s numbers were UP, baby.

Not quite as much of a peak for Nicki, but come on, she’s still Nicki.

Meanwhile, Alexandre Vauthier went from barely talked-about to HELLO, RELEVANCY.

For all of these brands (celebrities included), everything is a business and everything can be monetized. Whether it’s through the tried-and-true methods of social media influencers or through unplanned, dramatic events at a party, leveraging the star power (and follower counts) of celebrities wearing designer clothes is a no-brainer for fashion brands, especially during an event like NYFW.

After all, you know what they say—there’s no such thing as bad press!