everything we know about new york fashion week: mens
The CFDA held an invitation-only breakfast to drum up support for its inaugural Mens Week, hitting the hometown runway this July. Here’s what you need to know:
Photography Harry Carr
So far, this year's most exclusive fashion industry event wasn't any show or party, but a breakfast held by the Council of Fashion Designers of America at the organization's downtown home base on Tuesday. One WWD reporter who was turned away from the door hit up attendees (on the conditions of anonymity, of course) for a run down of the event and their honest opinions of the CFDA's plans.
As we reported following its announcement back in February, the first New York Fashion Week: Mens, will take place July 14 to 16 at Skylight Clarkson Square. Tuesday's event gathered designers including Timo Weiland, Michael Bastian, Public School, and Duckie Brown, as well as PR teams from Calvin Klein and Michael Kors. In addition to these designers, Patrik Ervell and Rag & Bone will also show in the summer. While longtime proponent Tommy Hilfiger has also confirmed his participation in some capacity, some brands are sticking to their current schedules. Although Calvin Klein Collection will present at Mens Week, CK's mainline will continue to show in Milan and Thom Browne plans to remain in Paris.
According to WWD, the Council still has several challenges ahead before the week kicks off. Chief among them: timing. New York's week follows the London, Paris, Milan, and couture shows. Additionally, this year's American men's trade shows aren't starting until the week after New York Fashion Week: Mens, which means some editors and buyers might find themselves ripping off their Prada and manically tapping a fire hydrant Do the Right Thing-style after spending 10 full days in the city's oppressive summer heat.
New York's mens week is also in need of more: more designers, more space, more sponsors. Skylight will serve as the week's chief venue, with the CFDA planning to stage roughly 20 shows in two venue rooms that can hold up to 450 people. But according to one attendee, the Council is still negotiating a presentation space for the week's up and coming design talents, who they're actively seeking more of in order to draw more international editors across the pond. And while Amazon and its fashion-focused sites, Dreamworks, and Shinola have already signed on as sponsors, the CFDA is still seeking a few more brand partnerships to finance the week.
The Council also plans to recruit a few "ambassadors" for the event, which will probably consist of stylish celebs or sports stars (perhaps New York Knick Carmelo Anthony, who spoke at MADE fashion week's wearable technology panel this past season, might be a good fit, although we'd pay to see Dennis Rodman reppin' the runway.) And on the subject of our ballin' hometown heroes: the CFDA also previewed its new logos for both men's and women's weeks, which are inspired by NY's boys in blue and orange.
Despite these obstacles, we're excited for New York's menswear designers to finally be getting the platform they deserve.
Text Emily Manning
Photography Harry Carr