Trendsetters and tastemakers might soon have another fashion week to add to their crowded agendas. According to the New York Times, after years of industry talk about bringing a men’s fashion week to New York, the event is close to becoming a reality as more sponsors and brands show interest. Menswear designers received emails from the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) in October to gauge support.
The suggested week is slated shortly after the Fourth of July, which would fall in line with the start of the men’s buying season and men’s fashion weeks in Paris, Milan and London.
Part of the challenge to establish a men’s week in the U.S. has been to generate a strong enough lineup of designers to attract attention from the international press and New York-based buyers. American designers like Calvin Klein and Phillip Lim have traditionally held their men’s shows in Europe. Other designers show their men’s ranges alongside their women’s collections in February and September, which tend to overshadow. Without major designers on board, the event could become an amateur act, the Times reported.
As Duckie Brown co-designer Daniel Silver told the Times, “New York has such strong men’s wear designers at this point, but I think what happens in New York is that your business gets to a certain point and then you feel compelled to show in Europe.”
Another hurdle is financing. The Times suggested a proposed budget of $2 million for the event. If the show isn’t big enough, there will be few sponsors, resulting in uncovered costs for advertising, sites, and production.
While Steven Kolb, CFDA chief executive, noted that there are a number of obstacles, he said creating a stand-alone men’s showcase would have an immense mark on the men’s industry. Kolb told the Times, “When I look at the things that CFDA has been able to accomplish over the last number of years, we’ve changed the organization in a big way.” He added, “If we were able to pull off men’s and do it right, it would have that same kind of stature.”