New York Fashion Week

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New York Fashion Week
Genre Clothing and fashion exhibitions
Frequency Semi-annually
Location(s) New York City
Inaugurated 1943
Founder Eleanor Lambert
Milagros Schmoll walks the runway at the Custo Barcelona Spring 2009 show in New York.

New York Fashion Week, held in February and September of each year, is a semi-annual series of events (generally lasting 7–9 days) when international fashion collections are shown to buyers, the press and the general public. It is one of four major fashion weeks in the world, collectively known as the "Big 4," along with those in Paris, London and Milan.[1][2]

It has consisted of numerous branded events, such as Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York[3] and MADE Fashion Week,[4] as well as numerous independent fashion productions around town.[5]

A centralized calendar of citywide events (including, but not limited to, those affiliated with WME | IMG) is kept by the Council of Fashion Designers of America,[6] and was acquired from calendar founder Ruth Finley.[7]

The estimated economic impact of New York Fashion Week is $865 million.[8]

Origin as "Press Week" under New York Dress Institute[edit]

The first New York Fashion Week was created in 1943 by Eleanor Lambert, press director of the American fashion industry’s first promotional organization, the New York Dress Institute.[9]

The event, the world's first-ever organized fashion week, was called "Press Week," and was created to attract attention away from French fashion during World War II, when fashion industry insiders were unable to travel to Paris to see French fashion shows.[10] It was also meant to showcase American designers for fashion journalists, who had previously neglected U.S. fashion innovations.

Press Week was a success, and fashion magazines like Vogue, which were normally filled with French designs, increasingly featured American fashion.[10]

By the mid-1950s, the event was known as "Press Week of New York." Spring 1951 (held February 1951) was the 16th Annual Press Week of New York.[11]

CFDA Consolidates "Press Week" Events as "7th on Sixth"[edit]

In 1993, the Council of Fashion Designers of America, led by Fern Mallis, consolidated the citywide events known as "New York Fashion Week" by staging them in a cluster of white tents in Bryant Park.[12][13][14] The event was branded with the trademark "7th on Sixth."[15]

CFDA Sells "7th on Sixth" to IMG[edit]

In 2001, "7th on Sixth" was sold to IMG.[16]

Olympus Becomes IMG Events Title Sponsor[edit]

In 2004, the camera company Olympus became sponsor of IMG's events, which were then renamed "Olympus Fashion Week."[17]

Mercedes-Benz Becomes IMG Events Title Sponsor[edit]

In 2007,[18] Mercedes-Benz became title sponsor of the IMG-produced events, adding New York to its roster of international "Mercedes-Benz fashion weeks,"[19] and dubbing it "MB Fashion Week New York."[20]

IMG / Mercedez-Benz Shows Relocation to Lincoln Center[edit]

In 2010, IMG / Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York left the Bryant Park tents, relocating to the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.[21][22]

Live Streaming of Events[edit]

In September 2011, New York designers began live-streaming runway shows, following London, who began in February 2010.[23][24] Streams were originally offered on YouTube, and now on

History of New York Fashion Week

IMG Sold to WME, Forming WME | IMG[edit]

In 2013, IMG and their New York Fashion Week events were sold to William Morris Endeavor and Silver Lake Partners for $2.3 billion.[25][26]

Separately, CFDA Acquires Citywide Fashion Calendar[edit]

In 2014, the Council of Fashion Designers of America acquired the "official" New York Fashion Week calendar (a list of citywide fashion events beyond IMG) from Ruth Finley, who had managed it for more than 60 years.[27][28]

Departure of Mercedes-Benz as Sponsor[edit]

In January 2015, Mercedes-Benz announced their departure as title sponsor from WME | IMG's events.[29]

WME | IMG Acquires Rival MADE Fashion Week[edit]

In March 2015, WME | IMG accounced that they had acquired MADE Fashion Week, which takes place during WME | IMG's events.[30][31]

WME | IMG Events Relocation to Spring Studios[edit]

In 2015, IMG's events were moved from Lincoln Center to Spring Studios.[21][32][33]

Other Notable Events[edit]

Outside entrance, Spring 2009 New York Fashion Week


In February 2014, Dr. Danielle Sheypuk became the first wheelchair-using model to appear in a show for New York Fashion Week; she modeled for designer Carrie Hammer.[34]

In September 2014, Karen Crespo became the first quadruple-amputee to walk at New York Fashion Week, also for Carrie Hammer. [35]

On December 12, 2014, a New York state court approved a settlement in a lawsuit by community activists over whether allowing the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week tents in Damrosch Park was a violation of the public trust doctrine. In accordance with the settlement, the City of New York, the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts agreed not to renew their contract with IMG. As a result, the February 2015 Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week will be the last one staged in Damrosch Park.[36]


The fall / winter 2015 shows took place from February 12–19.[37] In that week, actress Jamie Brewer became the first woman with Down syndrome to walk the red carpet at New York Fashion Week, which she did for designer Carrie Hammer.[38]

The spring / summer 2016[39] shows took place from September 10–17, 2015 at two new locations, Skylight at Moynihan Station in Midtown and Skylight Clarkson Square in SoHo.[40] The economic impact of these shows was estimated to be $900 million and attendance was approximately 125,000 people.[41]

In December 2015, the CFDA announced that it had hired the Boston Consulting Group to study possible means of revising the format of New York Fashion Week to adapt to changes brought about by social media. One option being explored is to bifurcate the event, with private showroom appointments of next season's designs for buyers and public fashion shows displaying in-season merchandise for consumers.[42]


Fall / winter 2016 events will take place February 11 - 18, 2016.[43]


Admission to shows at New York Fashion Week is typically in the form of accreditation, with specific events by invitation only.[44][45]

See also[edit]

Other fashion weeks:


  1. ^ Bradford, Julie (2014). Fashion Journalism. Routledge. p. 129. 
  2. ^ Dillon, Susan (2011). The Fundamentals of Fashion Management. A&C Black. p. 115. 
  3. ^ "Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York". Retrieved 2014-04-21. 
  4. ^ "MADE Fashion Week". MADE Fashion Week. Retrieved 2014-04-21. 
  5. ^ "New York Fashion Week Schedule - Shows by Day and Designer". Retrieved 2014-04-21. 
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  10. ^ a b Fortini, Amanda (2006-02-08). "A brief history of the fashion show". Retrieved 2014-04-21. 
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  12. ^ Mell, Eila (2011). New York Fashion Week: The Designers, the Models, the Fashions of the Bryant Park Era. Running Press. p. 10. ISBN 0762441917. 
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  14. ^ Spindler, Amy (31 October 1993). "Designers Turn New York Into a Fashion Big Top". The New York Times. Retrieved 19 December 2014. 
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  16. ^ Horyn, Cathy (6 February 2001). "Front Row: Designers council sells sponsorship of New York Fashion Week to IMG, the sports management and marketing company". The New York Times. Retrieved 19 December 2014. 
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  34. ^ Lankston, Charlie. "Dr. Danielle Sheypuk the first wheelchair-bound model in NYFW lands her debut clothing campaign | Daily Mail Online". Retrieved 2015-03-12. 
  35. ^ Jessica Probus (2015-03-07). "A Quadruple Amputee Walked The Runway At New York Fashion Week". Retrieved 2015-03-12. 
  36. ^ "New York Fashion Week Booted Out of Lincoln Center". New York Times. 18 December 2014. Retrieved 19 December 2014. 
  37. ^ "Fashion Calendar". New York Mag. Retrieved 2 July 2015. 
  38. ^ Jessica Probus, Stephanie McNeal. "Meet The First Woman With Down Syndrome To Walk At Fashion Week". BuzzFeed. 
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  40. ^ Mau, Dhani. "New York Fashion Week Is Moving To Two New Locations". Retrieved 2 July 2015. 
  41. ^ Anwar, Sara. "From staged stumbles to transatlantic shifts: This was NYC Fashion Week". CNN. Retrieved 26 October 2015. 
  42. ^ Lockwood, Lisa. "NYFW Going Consumer? CFDA Studies Idea". Women's Wear Daily. Retrieved 16 December 2015. 
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  44. ^ Chan, Sewell (6 September 2007). "Fashion Week: Not Open to the Public". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 December 2014. 
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