Are Binary Clothing Stores a Thing of the Past?
There is no doubt that the fashion industry is changing at a rapid rate. A dramatic 16% decrease in shows held at New York Fashion Week last February is evidence that the traditional gateway into fashion is undergoing an unprecedented transformation.
With the rise in popularity of fashion Instagram accounts such as Business of Fashion (@bof) and Diet Prada (@diet_prada), anyone with even a slight interest in fashion can now tune into fashion show highlights and seasonal trends with just a few taps on their phone. As the number of people granted access into the fashion world rises, a call for greater inclusivity in all respects is becoming increasingly resonant.
This call for inclusivity is being met by L’Insane, a Parisian concept store opened by Lyne Zein, that caters to those who do not identify with a specific gender. Zein’s background in fashion and business management as well as her experience at Vetements provided her with the tools to open up L’Insane, which she prefers to call a social space rather than a store. In an interview with Business of Fashion, Zein shared that it is difficult for non-binary individuals to feel like themselves except in fashion-dominant cities such as New York or London.
L’Insane stocks a motley crew of brands that create genderless pieces, including Eckhaus Latta, Cottweiler, Vaquera and Dilara Findikogluand, among many more rising stars in the fashion industry. When asked about her intended consumer, Zein stated, “We want to dress anything and everything, human or not.”
The concept of L’Insane is radical relative to how stores typically market their clothing, but it is not entirely unexpected. As Gen Z consumers are entering the fashion market, they are calling for more representation and inclusivity. A study conducted by Innovation Group revealed that 56% of American Gen Z-ers know someone who identifies as being non-binary. As the demand for inclusivity rises, it will be interesting to see if clothing stores’ marketing strategies will change to adopt L’Insane’s method or if they will continue to target binary genders.
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