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Female-founded brands make up 62% of this season’s LFW shows

Chloe Burney
20 February 2023

Statistics have revealed that 62% of London Fashion Week’s AW23 shows are from female-founded brands, challenging the notion that the majority of designers in the industry are men.

As London Fashion Week slowly draws to a close, luxury retailer Fenwick has delved into the schedule to compare female vs. male-owned brands.

Fenwick’s data showed a 3.3% increase in female-founded brands year-on-year at London Fashion Week, with more than half of LFW shows coming from brands founded by women.

Ultimately, over the past five years, there has been an increase of 10.7% in female-founded brands at LFW from brands such as Emilia Wickstead and Simone Rocha to more contemporary brands such as Rixo, which was founded in 2015.

One female designer in particular who has put their stamp of LFW in recent years is Molly Goddard. The designer, renowned for her dresses rendered from frothy tulle, presented her AW23 collection on Saturday at London Fashion Week, inspired by her time at university and exploration of the fashion industry.

Commenting on the ultra-feminine collection, Goddard said: "We reminisced about pieces we’d owned as kids and teenagers - leopard print jeans we’d bought at Gap kids in Whiteleys, screen print sporty knitwear from portobello, an exposed popper belt we shared from Claire’s accessories - ideas you’ll see referenced or directly recreated in the collection."

Despite this year’s shows have been dominated by female brands, there is still room to grow in terms of diversity and gender representation of female designers, founders, and creative directors.

Sue Shields, Womenswear Buying Manager at Fenwick, commented: "Female creatives are extremely important to the fashion industry, some of the biggest brands in the world were founded by women.

In previous years, less than half of London Fashion Week shows were from female-founded brands, so the increase to 62% this year is really positive. With the rise in female founders in 2023 there has also been an increase in inclusivity, something we saw at Sinead O'Dwyer’s show this season where she included a more diverse lineup of models than we have previously seen."

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