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June 23, 2017

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London shakes up tradition with mixed catwalks

For Hywel Davies, fashion programme director at London's prestigious Central Saint Martins design school, the "co-ed" trend is both a financially-sound move but also fits in with the industry's openness to change.

"It is about the industry looking how to best present their vision and putting mens and women show together makes commerce sense. Why pay for two shows when you can communicate your message in one?" he told AFP.

"I think it is a positive thing that the fashion industry is constantly chaining and looking at new ways of communicating its ideas. Change is good. It would be great if more fashion brands considered other ways of presentation instead of just catwalk shows," Davies added.

Financially necessity is even more relevant for smaller brands, such as Sibling, a funky brand created by three British designers which moved to mixed shows with its spring-summer 2015 collection.

Creating a show for both men's and women's collections is "a much more realistic process, as well as from a production and design point of view", said Sid Bryan, one of the label's stylists.

"The timeframe work into a January show and a February show, with men followed straight by women, is virtually impossible. We're a small team," he told AFP.

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