Hollywood starlets, fashion designers and industry moguls rubbed elbows at the ninth annual CFDA/Vogue magazine 2012 Fashion Fund Awards in Manhattan Tuesday night. The evening was filled with heavy hitters and newcomers alike, celebrating the night’s big winner Greg Chait of the Elder Statesmen. Elder Statesmen is an LA-based knitwear company that has expanded from the 2007 launch of 10-pound cashmere blankets to full-on clothing collections, under the watch and keen design aesthetic of Mr. Chait. Runner-ups included actor Tobey Maguire’s wife and jewelry designer, Jennifer Meyer Maguire, of Jennifer Meyer and stylist and shoe designer Tabitha Simmons. Actresses Emma Stone, Liv Tyler and Ashley Greene all made appearances on the red carpet in stunning ensembles posing with designers and other VIP’s including Chelsea Clinton, Vogue EIC Anna Wintour and CDFA president, designer Diane Von Furstenberg.
All of the on-the-horizon honorees were rewarded cash prizes – $300,000 for the winner and $100,000 for the runner-ups. In addition, based on their brand needs, each designer will receive access to professional business expertise and resources with an assigned industry business mentor. Since its inception, the CFDA program has given $2.8 million to emerging design companies, including now household names such as Billy Reid, Derek Lam, Prabal Gurang, 3.1 Phillip Lim and Rodarte, just to name a few.
In addition to the Fashion Fund Awards, the CFDA made other news this week by announcing their decision to contribute to east coast Hurricane Sandy Relief with a new online fashion initiative. The effort kicks off with an exclusive online auction offering some hefty prizes. Care for a trip to Diane Von Furstenberg’s Bahama home? Or perhaps a dinner date with Gwenyth Paltrow and celeb chef Mario Batali? All of these fine fashionista-worthy experiences and more can be bid on, with new offers being announced daily at charitybuzz. Just more proof that there are so many ways to give back.