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High Fashion in Amsterdam

by Amsterdam.com
​The Dutch fashion world gathers for the Amsterdam Fashion Week at the end of each January and this year, Dutch designer Sjaak Hullekes will be opening the 16th edition of the event with a catwalk fashion show. Fashion Week is the focal-point of the fashion world in the Netherlands, with a full week-long schedule of catwalk shows, trade fairs, presentations, lectures and of course, parties too. The event used to be known as Amsterdam International Fashion Week, but the ‘international’ tag has been dropped and now the show is attempting to focus more on the homegrown Dutch fashion scene.
 
As the 16th edition of Amsterdam Fashion Week kicked off the organizers and exhibitors both said business was good and any lingering signs of the ongoing economic crisis were barely noticeable. Retailers at the show noted that sales of designer clothing were brisk and the event was able to draw new sponsors for the first time in a while.
 
Amsterdam Fashion Week was first launched in 2004 in the hope to put Amsterdam on the map as an international fashion destination based on the models of London and New York. The Netherlands has never been viewed as a fashion capital in the past, and now the organizers hope to push the Amsterdam event up in the eyes of the world as being a very viable place to promote fashion in Europe. Amsterdam Fashion Week attempts to focus its efforts on highlighting smaller firms and designers as well as buyers and the fashion press.
 
The program is dominated by home-grown Dutch designers on the opening nights with a focus on new talent and sustainability. As the shows moves forward, the bigger names in the fashion world will show their collections at the week’s end. With so many new and established designers showing their collections on the Amsterdam catwalks all at one time, there has been a surge in interest for Dutch designs and Amsterdam Fashion Week now attracts a huge audience of international brands, buyers and press. The popular shows spills out into the streets of Amsterdam too, with public catwalk shows, parties, shop launches, lectures and expositions, all organized in collaboration with the local museums, galleries, and shops. All of the effort put into Amsterdam Fashion Week has not gone unnoticed as the event was recently awarded the honor of the “Best International Fashion Week” award presented by the international lifestyle magazine Sublime in July of 2011. If Amsterdam Fashion Week can continue its present momentum, it won’t be too long before the city claims the same high fashion pedigree that is currently enjoyed by Paris, London, New York and Rome.

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