History of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week

It’s here. Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. Twice a year, more than 80 designers debut collections to more than 100,000 industry experts from around the world, including buyers, editors, retailers, celebrities and more. It’s an especially exciting time for us at TrimLab. After months of collaborating with many of these designers on their custom fasteners and trim (from zippers and zipper pulls to embroidery thread and interlinings), we finally get to see their hard work come to life on the runways for all the world to see.

While we’re all familiar with the buzz that surrounds Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week today, many of you might not be aware of the event’s fascinating origins and history. NYFW has come a long way in the past couple of decades. Scroll below to see how it’s evolved over the years!

(…and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram as we share our favorite fastener/trim applications from this week’s runways.)

Image via Fashionologie
Image via Fashionologie

It all began in the early 1940s, when World War II made it impossible for fashion journalists to attend the fashion shows in Paris, which was then the world’s sartorial capital. As a result, prominent fashion publicist Eleanor Lambert saw an opportunity to give American fashion an international audience, and founded “Press Week” to showcase American designers for the national and regional media. Thereafter, prominent magazines like Vogue increasingly began to feature American as opposed to only French fashion.

Image via SeeHeardKnown.com

For the next three decades, designers continued staging their shows throughout the city until, in 1994, key players in the fashion community made a collaborative effort to move the event to a permanent location in a series of large white tents at its former site in Bryant Park. (For a fascinating behind-the-scenes look, check out “The Tents” movie.) With designers like Donna Karan, Calvin Klein and Ralph Lauren taking part, suddenly Fashion Week began to attract swarms of not only editors but also celebrities and other VIPs, with a throng of onlookers accumulating outside the tents for a glimpse at the action.

Image via NYTimes.com
Image via NYTimes.com

Eventually, it became clear that Bryant Park could no longer accommodate the rate at which Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week was growing. And in September 2010, the event was moved uptown to its current location at Lincoln Center – a move we hope will allow the event to continue to grow and prosper.

Stay tuned as the festivities take place February 6-13. For more information, visit mbfashionweek.com.

Image via NYMag.com

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