At least one group of men’s fashion shows has found a title sponsor.
Cadillac has stepped up to become the presenting sponsor of New York Men’s Day, a collaboration of emerging men’s designers brought together by Agentry PR. The automotive brand has signed on for a year and will sponsor the fall and spring shows.
Presentations of the fall collections will take place on Feb. 11, and Erin Hawker, founder of Agentry, said the spring shows will now take place in July instead of September.
Hawker said the decision to move the dates was “based on our talks with buyers and editors,” and NYMD will now “coincide with the trade shows.”
The change in dates has been an ongoing discussion within the men’s community over the past few years. The idea of launching a New York Men’s Fashion Week follows long-running complaints that the men’s shows get overshadowed by women’s in February and September. While the timing is less of a problem in February, since it is only a few weeks after the runway shows in London, Milan and Paris, the September dates come some six weeks after the buying cycle for the industry. Most major and independent retailers attend the trade shows and visit showrooms in July and finalize their buys at the MAGIC Marketplace in Las Vegas in August, meaning shows in September are strictly for show.
Tommy Fazio, president of Project, has been an active proponent of New York Men’s Fashion Week. He said he had another meeting with the Council of Fashion Designers of America last week and believes the group is on board. “Everybody wants to unify the marketplace,” he said. “We’re trying to come up with the exact dates now.”
Steven Kolb, chief executive officer of the CFDA, said the association is still not ready to pull the trigger. Amazon, DreamWorks, Shinola and Smartwater have already committed to sponsor the event, according to sources, but CFDA is still searching for a title sponsor. Moving NYMD forward may be the catalyst the CFDA needs to jump onboard. Kolb has said in the past that many of the group’s men’s designers are supportive of the idea. Kolb even attended the most recent London Collections: Men shows for a bird’s-eye look of how other cities stage their men’s-only events.
Cadillac has been a supporter of NYMD since it launched in February 2013. Melody Lee, director of brand and reputation strategy for Cadillac, said the automotive company is eager to take our “partnership with NYMD to the next level with a yearlong presenting sponsorship. The support of emerging talent is of the utmost importance to Cadillac and we are looking forward to an annual calendar of events that aligns our brand with these exciting and talented men’s wear designers.”
The fall presentations will feature 12 men’s designers, including Carlos Campos, David Hart, Ernest Alexander, J.Lindeberg and Lucio Castro. They will be held at Industria Superstudio on Washington Street, with six showing in the morning and six in the afternoon.
Other sponsors of NYMD include Oribe, AOMFPro and Johnston & Murphy.