In the global domain of fashion and style, there are not many events that are more relevant than the New York Fashion Week. This glamorous series of happenings became a global phenomenon in recent decades and is the place where everyone who is anyone in the fashion world simply must come. While there are other Fashion Week events around the world, the one in NYC holds the mantle of the dominant one. While today many take it for granted, this even has a very interesting and dynamic history that reaches back many years in the past.
An ocean away from the city of New York, it was in France that the term haute couture or “high fashion” was first created. There, in the 1700’s, Louis XIV put on shows in which different types of new garments and clothes were presented. While these had many other aspects to them, they were still close to the modern concept of a fashion show. In 1858 the House of Worth in Paris organized the first ever modern fashion show. However, while France did play its part in the modern history of fashion, New York took it a step further almost a century later.
In 1943, Eleanor Lambert, who was the American fashion industry press director, decided to organize an event in New York. It was called Press Week and it basically wanted to create an alternative to the French fashion events, being that the US designers could not travel there because of the war. Instead, Lambert wanted to show the country what American designers are capable of and what innovations they had to present to the US fashion journalists. The event was a huge success and soon after, even the French-focused magazines like Vogue began showcasing American designers and their fashion.
The event continued under this name for decades, where it slowly but surely became a household name not just in the fashion industry but across the board. At the same time, it began generating more and more attention, not just in the US, but also in other countries, especially in Europe. These led to many designers, even those working in huge centers in France and Italy to visit the event. Then, in 1993, it consolidated into a series of citywide events that got their modern name – the New York Fashion Week. The same event was branded with the 7th on Sixth trademark.
With its rich history, the New York Fashion Week and the interest it generates live on as the most important event in the fashion calendar.