Tom Ford: 'Fashion is the toughest industry in the world'

Story highlights

  • Designer Tom Ford showed his Autumn-Winter 2016 collection recently at New York Fashion Week
  • The presentation of both menswear and womenswear coincided with the delivery of the clothes in store
  • This new system, at odds with the traditional fashion model, is being termed "see now, buy now"

New York (CNN)From his early days at Gucci to his successful forays into film, celebrated designer Tom Ford has gained a maverick reputation. In recent years this has been most evident in his approach to the fashion system.

Rarely keeping to a regular slot, venue, or indeed country, for his seasonal shows, Ford is known for his distinctive approach, maintaining an air of exclusivity by inviting only an elite few and often experimenting with the medium itself. Earlier this year he eschewed the runway for a short film.
    Last February Ford announced he would present his Autumn-Winter 2016 menswear and womenswear collections in early September, coinciding with the delivery of the clothes in store. This approach -- widely referred to as "see now, buy now' -- is being similarly adopted by high-profile labels like Burberry, suggesting that this season could be a radical turning point in the way fashion is presented and consumed.
    Speaking to Derek Blasberg ahead of the show Ford explained part of his reasoning behind the decision: "I think the words 'long lead' are not particularly meaningful in our culture. Everyone wants everything right now."
    "When you can buy something online and have it delivered the same day to your house in lots of key cities like you can now, it seems odd that you would look at clothes online and they would be everywhere, but you can't have them for five months. "
    He revealed his game-changing collection earlier this week in a characteristically intimate setting: a dinner party at the Four Seasons in New York's Seagram Building. Celebrities like Julianne Moore, Tom Hanks, Rita Ora and Iman were in attendance.
    Not content with making a major fashion statement, Ford is also currently promoting his new film "Nocturnal Animals," first at the Venice Film Festival and then at the Toronto Film Festival. The film stars Jake Gyllenhaal, Amy Adams, Isla Fisher and Aaron Taylor-Johnson.
    So how does the designer balance his busy lifestyle?
    "I'm extremely scheduled, really down to the half hour of every day."