Harman Patil (Editor)

Council of Fashion Designers of America

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Eleanor Lambert


Council of Fashion Designers of America httpslh6googleusercontentcomvdaNy7VC7sAAA

Lincoln Center for the Perfor, amfAR - The Foundati, God's Love We Deliver, Whitney Museum of American, National Chamber of Italian


The Council of Fashion Designers of America, Inc. (CFDA), founded in 1962 by publicist Eleanor Lambert, is a not-for-profit trade association of over 450 prominent American fashion and accessory designers. The first president of the Council was Sydney Wragge (till 1965). As of 2009, Diane von Fürstenberg was the group's president and Steven Kolb the CEO. The organization's mission is to strengthen the influence and success of American designers in the global economy.


In addition to hosting the annual CFDA Fashion Awards, the organization is committed to the development of future American design talent, as well as providing support for established designers. Its educational Initiatives provide support and resources for students at the high school, collegiate, and post-graduate levels including the Geoffrey Beene Design Scholarship and the Liz Claiborne Fashion Scholarship. In addition, it supports working designers in the early stages and throughout their careers through the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund, the {FASHION INCUBATOR} and provides business opportunities for the membership through its Strategic Partnerships Group (SPG). Through the CFDA Foundation, it mobilizes its membership to support charitable causes such as: Fashion Targets Breast Cancer, The CFDA Health initiative, The CFDA-Vogue Initiative for HIV and AIDS (7th on Sale), Fashion for America, Fashion for Haiti, Fashion for Japan, and Fashion for Sandy Relief.


The CFDA Fashion Awards, which honors excellence in fashion design, is often called "the Oscars of fashion". Nominations are submitted by the Fashion Guild, a group of over 1,500 CFDA members, fashion editors, retailers, and stylists. Award winners are voted on and announced at an annual black tie event held at Lincoln Center in New York City. Last year the event was broadcast on style.com. Award winners receive a trophy made by the New York firm Society Awards.

Ex–Secretary of State Hillary Clinton attended the 2013 CFDA Fashion Awards at Alice Tully Hall in New York announcing the highest honor, the Founder's Award, which was taken home by Oscar de la Renta.

Past winners

This is a selected list of winners. Winners in other categories, winners in past years, and nominees can be found at the CFDA website, www.cfda.com.


The CFDA is also known for its numerous collaborations that help to further the careers of its members. In 2010 the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund finalists Monique Péan, Patrik Ervell, and Sophie Theallet teamed up with Gap Inc.. In 2012 and 2013 the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund winners and runners-up each created capsule collections with J. Crew.

In celebration of the organization's 50th Anniversary, Target and Neiman Marcus partnered with 24 CFDA members to create a special holiday collection that was available at both retailers. Additionally, the CFDA has partnered with Kohl’s on designer collaborations such as Derek Lam for Kohl’s and most recently, Catherine Malandrino for Kohl’s.

The CFDA is also known for being at the forefront of technology and fashion. On October 3, 2013 the CFDA and Google+ launched an innovative shopping tool, titled “Shoppable Hangouts,” where users had the ability to shop Hangouts on Air (HOA). The CFDA kicked off the product launch with CFDA President Diane von Fürstenberg. Rachel Zoe, Marcus Wainwright and David Neville of rag & bone, and Rebecca Minkoff also participated in the Shoppable Hangout experience.

The CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund

The CFDA and Vogue Magazine have created an endowment to support the next generation of American fashion designers. With monies raised, the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund has been established, the stated purpose of which is to generate sufficient income each year to fund significant financial awards to one or more designers and provide business mentoring. Award recipients are selected by a committee of industry experts, based on the exceptional talent they have already demonstrated in fashion design and their capacity for future distinction in the fashion industry.

The CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Selection Committee annually selects three emerging fashion designers, who receive:

(1) Business mentoring from an established team of fashion industry professionals, in areas such as business planning, marketing, sourcing, production, exporting, etc. and
(2) To encourage and enable the recipients to pursue his/her own independent design plan (one winner at $300,000 and two runners-up at $100,000 each). To encourage and enable the recipients to pursue his/her own independent design plan (one winner at $300,000 and two runners-up at $100,000 each).

The 2014 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund finalists:
Paul Andrew for Paul Andrew - Winner
Eva Fehren for Eva Zuckerman - Runner-up
Ryan Roche for Ryan Roche - Runner-up
Brett Heyman for Edie Parker
Gigi Burris Millinery for Gigi Burris
Natalie Levy & Grant Krajecki for Grey Ant
Matt Orley, Alex Orley & Samantha Florence for Orley
Daniel Corrigan & Jake Sargent for Simon Miller
Tanya Taylor for Tanya Taylor
Wes Gordon for Wes Gordon

The 2013 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund finalists:
Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne for Public School - Winner
Juan Carlos Obando for Juan Carlos Obando - Runner-up
Marc Alary for Marc Alary - Runner-up
Jason Jones and Mike Feldman for Parabellum
Misha Nonoo for Nonoo
Ryan Lobo and Ramon Martin for TOME
Shimon Ovadia and Ariel Ovadia for Ovadia & Sons
Tim Coppens for Tim Coppens
Todd Snyder for Todd Snyder
Veronica Swanson Beard and Veronica Miele Beard for Veronica Beard
2012 Winner: Greg Chait
2012 Runners-up: Jennifer Meyer and Tabitha Simmons


The CFDA {FASHION INCUBATOR} is a business development program designed to support the next generation of fashion designers in New York City. The program provides a creative professional environment with the mission of helping to grow and sustain the businesses of the 10 participating brands over the course of the two-year program. By offering low-cost design studio space, business mentoring, educational seminars, and networking opportunities, the program provides a way for participants to reach their full potential and become an integral part of the New York Fashion community. In 2010, the program partnered with New York University’s Stern School of Business to create a Masters Workshop that pairs their top MBA Students with the designers to work on business development projects.

Successful alumni of the Incubator program include Prabal Gurung and the 2013 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund winners, Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne of Public School.

The 4.0 class (2016-2018) of the {FASHION INCUBATOR} includes Alexandra Alvarez of Alix, Aurora James of Brother Vellies, Charles Youssef, Daniel DuGoff of Ddugoff, Tim Joo and Dan Joo of Haerfest, Jason Alkire and Julie Alkire of Haus Alkire, Ji Oh, Katie deGuzman and Michael Miller of K/ller Collection, Thaddeus O’Neil, and Molly Yestadt of Yestadt Millinery.

The Fashion Manufacturing Initiative

The Fashion Manufacturing Initiative (FMI) is an investment fund to help revitalize New York City’s garment industry. The program offers matching financial grants to New York City’s fashion manufacturing production facilities looking to grow and sustain their business through the acquisition of innovative equipment, expanding their services, training workers, and professional development programming. FMI was developed and will be managed by the CFDA and will operate under the leadership of Andrew Rosen, CEO of Theory, in affiliation with the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC). On February 6, 2014, as part of the Fashion Manufacturing Initiative, Mayor of New York City Bill de Blasio visited the Garment Center and helped "the CFDA present grants to seven local manufacturing companies."

Fashion Targets Breast Cancer

Fashion Targets Breast Cancer® (FTBC), a charitable initiative of the CFDA/CFDA Foundation, marshals the goodwill and services of every element of the fashion industry (including fashion designers in the U.S. and internationally, leading retailers, the world’s most famous models and celebrities, fashion photographers, as well as media, advertising, and PR firms, among others) to raise public awareness and funds for the breast cancer cause, in the U.S. and internationally.

The Fashion Targets Breast Cancer name and symbol were created by Ralph Lauren and subsequently entrusted to the CFDA Foundation. FTBC was first presented in the U.S. in the spring of 1994 during New York Fashion Week, and was formally launched in September 1994 at a special White House reception hosted by then-First Lady Hillary Clinton. During this initial campaign, 400,000 FTBC shirts were sold, raising $2 million to benefit the Nina Hyde Center for Breast Health at the Lombardi Cancer Center at Georgetown University Medical Center. This center was chosen as beneficiary at Ralph Lauren’s request, in memory of his friend Nina Hyde, the former fashion editor of The Washington Post, who died of breast cancer in 1990.

To date, nearly $50 million has been granted to breast cancer charities worldwide from FTBC campaigns. CFDA Members have designed special FTBC branded or inspired merchandise, which was either sold or auctioned over the course of the campaign.

CFDA Scholarship Program

The Scholarship Program was created to award annual merit-based scholarship grants to students who study in a four-year, full-time college level design program. It has awarded $1,399,250 to students. The Geoffrey Beene Design Scholarship Award, the Liz Claiborne Design Scholarship Award, and the CFDA/Teen Vogue Scholarship Award in partnership with Target selected scholars from one of the CFDA’s 20 participating design schools and donated $25,000 towards tuition and educational expenses. The awards are based solely on merit and judged by a panel of industry experts.

Published works

The CFDA has published nine books:

  • American Fashion
  • American Fashion Accessories
  • American Fashion Menswear
  • American Fashion Home
  • American Fashion Cookbook
  • Geoffrey Beene: An American Fashion Rebel
  • American Travel
  • IMPACT: Fifty Years of the Council of Fashion Designers of America
  • The Pursuit of Style: Advice and Musings from America's Top Fashion Designers
  • References

    Council of Fashion Designers of America Wikipedia