New York—The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) choose to outmaneuver and outshine even the St. Patrick’s Day Parade with its 2015 CFDA Fashion Award nominees.
CFDA President Diane von Furstenberg began unveiling nominees with one of the highlights: the Geoffrey Beene Lifetime Award. Jumping on stage—not cartwheeling as she’s been known to do on the runway—was Betsey Johnson.
“I am so sorry, I just want to say this is the ultimate beyond, Oh My F G moment and I didn’t think I would ever want it because I didn’t want to be 72,” said Johnson, a four-time CFDA Fashion Award winner, who was wearing one of her dresses from 1965. “I love our club; I love what you have done with it. I love the money we have raised for AIDs and Breast Cancer and beyond.”
“You deserve everything,” von Furstenberg told her.
Johnson was just one of many awards that received thunderous applause from the crowd, which included most honorees and nominees, as well as Vera Wang, Gilles Mendel, Italo Zucchelli, Jennifer Fisher, Simon Spurr, Lily Kwong, Ruth Finley, Kristy Caylor, Pamela Love, Mimi So, Jenna Lyons and Leandra Medine.
The list of nominees includes:
Womenswear Designer of the Year Award
Joseph Altuzarra for Altuzarra, Marc Jacobs, Michael Kors, Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough for Proenza Schouler, and Ashley Olsen and Mary-Kate Olsen for The Row.
Accessory Designer of the Year Award
Alexander Wang, Irene Neuwirth, Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez for Proenza Schouler, Ashley Olsen and Mary-Kate Olsen for The Row, and Tabitha Simmons.
Menswear Designer of the Year Award
Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne for Public School, David Neville and Marcus Wainwright for Rag & Bone, Thom Browne, Tim Coppens, and Tom Ford.
Swarovski Award for Womenswear
Rosie Assoulin, Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne for Public School, and Ryan Roche
Swarovski Award for Menswear
Shayne Oliver for Hood by Air, Alex Orley, Matthew Orley and Samantha Orley for Orley, and Ariel and Shimon Ovadia for Ovadia & Sons.
Swarosvki Award for Accessory Design
Paul Andrew, Eva Zuckerman for Eva Fehren, and Rachel Mansur and Floriana Gavriel for Mansur Gavriel.
The Swarovski Award recipients in each category will receive generous financial support from Swarovski as well as exposure to the company’s vast and innovative Swarovski crystal resources.
The Media Award, given in honor of Eugenia Sheppard, the influential journalist who revolutionized fashion reporting during her time at the New York City Herald Tribune, will be given to Instagram.
The Founders Award, given in honor of CFDA founder Eleanor Lambert who is widely credited with putting American fashion on the map, will go to Millard “Mickey” Drexler, chairman/CEO of J.Crew Group, Inc.
The International Award will go to Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli of Valentino for their creative contribution to the international fashion stage.
The nominees consisted mostly of designers who were previous nominees and winners–a reminder, perhaps, of how few big-name designers and editorial favorites there are out there right now. Nominations come from the CFDA Fashion Awards Guild, an exclusive group of fashion retailers, press, stylists and of course the 450 fashion designers in the CFDA itself. The nominations are ratified by the CFDA’s board.
The 2015 CFDA Awards ceremony is scheduled for June 1 at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall.