The Un-conference’s ten essential questions cover a range of themes—from the state of wearable technology and the fashion system, to how brands should navigate the current divisive political landscape— the substance of the discussions will provide ideas and direction for anyone at work and play.


+ What does beauty look like now?

The fashion industry has begun to expand its definition of beauty beyond 32 skinny white girls on a runway—in terms of age, size, race and gender. Is the greater acceptance merely a fleeting trend? 

Mickey Boardman, Paper Magazine - Ivan Bart, IMG Models - James Scully, Casting Director - Ashley Graham, Model - Lisa Eldridge, Make-Up Artist

+ How do you solve a problem like fashion week?

Should the spectacle of fashion shows be aimed directly at the consumer with buy-now merchandise? New York and London say maybe, Paris and Milan say non….

Katherine Zarrella, Fashion Unfiltered - Gary Wassner, Hilldun Corporation - Rachna Shah, KCD Worldwide Andrew Rosen, Theory - Sarah Rutson, Net-a-Porter

+ Sensory deprivation—Can we have some please?

Technology has enabled us to be constantly entertained and occupied but have we forgotten the value of stimulating the senses? A discussion with some of the people who create our environments—from stores to restaurants to cars.

James Truman, Nix - Henri Scars Struck, Music Producer - Sandy McGill, BMW - Samantha Goldworm, 12.29

+ Is there a responsible way to produce and consume fast fashion?

If inexpensive product is produced by workers whose rights are protected and the low-income consumer is able to afford a stylish and durable garment which is recycled at the end of its life by the brand that sold it--can low cost fashion be a positive proposition?

Carla Buzasi, WGSN - Julie Gilhart, Fashion Consultant - Catarina Midby, H&M - Juan Antonio Chaparro, Esprit - Julie Zerbo, The Fashion Law blog

+ Is fame the most important asset of the modern age?

Is being famous all the qualification you need to run for president, to design a collection or anything else? 

Joanna Coles, Cosmopolitan

+ Who owns the future of retail?

What form of store will be able to fully capture the consumer of the future?

Mortimer Singer, Marvin Traub Associates - Tony King, King & Partners - Claire Distenfeld, Fivestory - Marigay McKee, MM Luxe

+ Is a good Instagram post worth more than a double-page spread in the September Issue?

How to effectively advertise and get your message out is one of today’s biggest challenges for all brands. What’s the smartest way to reach the consumer? 

Dirk Standen, 23 Stories/Condé Nast - Pascal Dangin, KiDs Agency

+ When will someone invent wearable tech that we actually need? 

We didn’t know we needed the smartphone till we got it. Do we really want more gadgets? 

Vanessa Friedman, New York Times - Rey Peralta, Milk - Amanda Parkes, Manufacture New York

+ Can sustainability be sexy?

Is it possible for businesses to get to a point where sustainability is the standard and not the exception? 

Matt Scanlan, Naadam - Laurent Claquin, Kering - John Moore, Outerknown 

+ What are millennial social sensations actually talking about? 

Deciphering exactly how savvy, young talents are dominating the digital world.

Garrett Fuselier, Phhhoto - Dom Pettman, Author “Infinite Distraction”/New School