ESQUIRE’S OWN FASHION WEEK: Could Esquire be aiming to jump-start a New York Fashion Week for men? As debate rages over whether Manhattan should have its own version of the men’s shows in London, Milan and Paris, the Hearst-owned magazine is holding a three-day event from Wednesday to Sept. 5 that will include a series of daytime designer presentations preceded by nighttime events. To be held at Parlor, a moodily lit member’s-only club in TriBeCa, the trio of events will begin with a party DJ’d by Mark Ronson on Wednesday at 9 p.m. to honor the 10th anniversary of Esquire fashion director Nick Sullivan and senior fashion editor Wendell Brown. The next night, the title and the Tribeca Film Institute will fete TFI-funded projects and films premiering this season. DJ Tom Macari will choose the music for the party.
The events will wrap on Friday with a series of daytime presentations by indie American men’s wear designers Proper Cloth, Haspel and Cadet, and an evening party, in which DJ Mia Moretti will spin.
Dubbed “The Esquire” by higher-ups at the magazine, the whole shebang is invite-only and is sponsored by a host of advertisers — some more fashionable than others. Advertisers include Tudor, Rogaine, Jockey, Stolichnaya Vodka, Peroni Beer, Emirates Airline, Perry Ellis and Viktor & Rolf Spicebomb. According to Jack Essig, senior vice president, publishing director and chief revenue officer for Hearst’s men’s group, the sponsors will be present but they won’t have product placement on the models during the fashion presentations. (That will likely come as a relief to the brands.) The one exception will be the Haspel models, who will don Jockey underwear and t-shirts.
Rogaine will sponsor Proper Cloth’s show, which will be followed by a Q&A with designer Seph Skerritt and Rogaine “brand celebrity grooming expert” Diana Schmidtke. Haspel’s presentation will be sponsored by Jockey, while Cadet’s collection will be sponsored by Emirates Airline.
Asked whether The Esquire signals an early foray into potentially sponsoring the much-rumored men’s fashion week, Essig was cautious.
“It would be great. There’s a lot of buzz around a men’s fashion week in New York,” he said, but then turned to his upcoming event.
“Everybody knows the big fashion houses. This is an opportunity to celebrate up-and-coming brands,” Essig offered, then revisited the original question. “But it’s not like we would or wouldn’t do it.”