It’s all over for Alexander Wang and Balenciaga, so what now?
By WGSN Insider

He can do cool, he can do couture, he can do high street. But what’s next? WGSN’s senior team predicts the designer’s next move

Jul 30, 2015
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After three years as Creative Director, Alexander Wang is reportedly parting ways with Balenciaga.

During the designer’s tenure, sales were solid and collections, good. In short, there were very few complaints – Wang proved he can do couture as well as he can do street cool.

But was Balenciaga ever really the right fit? WGSN’s senior team give their thoughts on what Wang should do now…

Take the high street
Carla Buzasi, Global Chief Content Officer, says: “If you look to Olivier Theyskens’ path after he left Nina Ricci as a blue print, I think there’s a great opportunity for Wang to move to a contemporary, dare I say it, more affordable brand where he can have real impact. His collaboration with H&M shows there’s a huge appetite for his aesthetic and I’d personally love to see that developed with a household brand.”

Explore his talent and diversify
Catriona McNab, Chief Creative Officer, says: “I think he should make a film and write a book, he is an extraordinary talent with much to say, yet still so unknown by most consumers.”

Make wearables more wearable
Lauretta Roberts, Director of Brands and Propositions, says: “He should definitely keep the focus on developing his own line and maybe expand that into different categories. It seems fairly clear he could credibly move into sports and performance apparel proper, since he is so inspired by it. After that, if he still has a gap in his schedule to fill and wants to forge creative collaborations, I think he would translate well into the tech space. I can just see a Wang x Apple Watch or indeed his own branded line of wearables.”

Develop his own brand 
Lizzy Bowring, Head of Catwalks, says: “It was time for his departure from Balenciaga. Increasingly, the collections began to look more like a hybrid of Wang’s street cool. His devotion should be concentrated on continuing to build his street smart brand, which I’m sure his avid devotees would be ecstatic about.”

Collaborate with a high end street brand
Chris Coleman, Head of Design and Youth Culture, says: “I’d love to see him move into the premium streetwear scene – it would be amazing to see what he could do with the likes Supreme or even Nike Lab.”

Become a social and technology trailblazer
Rachel Arthur, Senior Editor of Digital, says: “I would love to see Wang embrace where the communications landscape is moving, experiment with innovative technologies as he has hinted at in the past, and show the rest of the industry what a newer and still independent name can achieve in the space.”

NEED EXPERT ANALYSIS? WGSN publishes 350 in-depth reports each month on what’s coming next. Sound good? Find out more here.


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