Fashion Week's top designers celebrate milestones
Fashion Week always fetes, well, fashion, of course, and the brilliance, creativity and vision of designers from all over the world. But this season, a bunch of these talented folks are celebrating more than just the clothes -- they're uncorking the champagne (literally and figuratively) and toasting their anniversaries in the biz.
Kings of bling Badgley Mischka hit their 25th anniversary this year. Mark Badgley, 52, and James Mischka, 53, business and life partners (they were married in March), joined forces in 1988. Red-carpet entrance makers featuring elaborate beading and embellishment are the duo's signature . . . oh, that Old Hollywood glam. Over the years, they've expanded the breadth of their work to include swanky sportswear, bridal and accessories. They'll celebrate their milestone with the opening of their first Manhattan store, at 64th and Madison.
Monday night Donna Karan is celebrating the 25th birthday of her spunky DKNY brand with a rollicking bash downtown that includes a performance by R&B star Rita Ora, special-guest DJ sets and some serious Belvedere Vodka cocktails. How does Karan feel about the brand hitting the quarter-century milestone? "I'm too young to be this old!" she said.
Designer Elie Tahari is marking his 40th anniversary this season. It kicked off on Sept. 4th, which was proclaimed "Elie Tahari Day" by Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the City of New York.
Comedian Joan Rivers, left, holds a proclamation presented to fashion designer Elie Tahari marking his 40th anniversary in the fashion industry. (Sept. 4, 2013)
Kate Spade's 20th anniversary is being underscored with a glorious coffee-table book, "Things We Love," ($40, Abrams), which is part diary, part inspirational reference and is sprinkled throughout with playful tips and practical advice -- all underscoring the brand's fabulous and fun sense of whimsy-meets-classic.
Designer Kenneth Cole is celebrating his 30th year in the fashion business. Pictured here, Cole in 1985 .
Designer Kenneth Cole is celebrating his 30th year in the fashion business. Here, Cole taking a finale bow at his show last February during New York Fashion Week. (Feb. 2, 2013)
"This Is A Kenneth Cole Production," ($75, Rizzoli, New York) will be released in October as part of Cole's 30th anniversary celebration. The text is by "Preppy Handbook" author Lisa Birnbach and the book includes contributions from President Bill Clinton, Diane von Furstenberg and Robert Redford. In an intro, Cole says, " "This is a Kenneth Cole Production is not a how-to book, not a scrapbook, not a memoir, but a look back on a brand's journey and the impact it has made on people in ways I could never have dreamed possible."
The ECHO Design group is celebrating -- wow -- their 90th anniversary this year. Founded by Edgar and Theresa Hyman in 1923, today the company chairwoman is their daughter, Dorothy Hyman Roberts, 84. To honor the moment, there's a new capsule collection of bags, phone cases and scarves (shown here) highlighting the most iconic cities around the world.
Dennis Basso, the designer of uber-luxe furs and fashion, dresses many a celeb and influential type, and is celebrating his 30th year in the business. "It's been a wonderful great journey and I feel it is just beginning," he says. The festivities have been on-going . . . in February he hosted a black tie dinner for 60 friends, to which he says, "my dear friend Joan Rivers showed up unexpectedly and gave a hilarious toast."
Women's ready-to-wear designer Yoana Baraschi is commemorating her 10th anniversary with a partnership with Conscious Commerce and the creation of a special embroidered dress that will be sold exclusively at Anthropologie for $298, starting October 1, from which 100% of the proceeds will go to New Light India, an organization focused on stopping the trafficking of young girls into the sex trad and to provide care to those suffering from HIV/AIDS.