NEW YORK — Recognizing that the pressure on New York’s emerging band of design talents is enormous, crystal maven Nadja Swarovski invited several of them to a leisurely lunch at Le Bernardin on Thursday in honor of their nominations for Swarovski’s Perry Ellis Awards.
“I have to admit, life has gotten a little bit overwhelming,” said Derek Lam, who is nominated for his ready-to-wear, along with Zac Posen and Patrick Robinson, the current women’s designer for Perry Ellis. “I feel like I’ve been doing all my work from 9 p.m. until 3 in the morning, because that’s all the time I have. I was just asking when I could find time to take a vacation.”
Carolina Herrera, Reed Krakoff, Michael Kors and Proenza Schouler designers Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez also turned up to toast the nominees, including accessories designers Anthony Camargo and David Nakard Armstrong for Anthony Nak, and Eugenia Kim.
“Since I’m the oldest young designer in New York, it’s the least I can do to come out and support these kids,” Kors said. “The crazy thing is that I’m not that much older than the kids.”
Swarovski said she was hosting the event prior to the Council of Fashion Designers of America Fashion Awards on June 7 because she will not be able to attend the actual ceremony, underwritten by Swarovski, as she is pregnant and her due date is around that time. Peter Arnold, executive director of the CFDA, presented her with a baby-sized sweatshirt with the F of CFDA embroidered in crystals, and confessed that he, too, is expecting — Arnold and his partner, Tim Braun, are having twins through a surrogate, with a due date in September.
— Eric Wilson