CFDA Awards: McQueen Honored, Wang Nominated

To be inducted into the Council of Fashion Designers of America is like winning an Oscar. And just like the nominations for the Academy Awards, the fashion community waits breathlessly to discover who is to be honored and, more importantly, who is to be recognized as the latest and greatest in fashion.

Awards fall into the following categories: womenswear, menswear, accessories, journalism, creative vision, and lifetime achievement. The awards are voted on by the CFDA Board of Directors (akin to the Academy) and will be announced on July 7th at Lincoln Center — the new home of New York Fashion Week — at the annual CFDA Gala.

Wednesday night, the nominees and honorary awards recipients were announced:

Honorary Awards will be given to…

Geoffrey Beene Lifetime Achievement Award: Michael Kors (last year this was awarded to Anna Sui)

International Award: Burberry’s Christopher Bailey (last year’s recipient was Marc Jacobs for his work with Louis Vuitton)

Fashion Icon Award: Iman

Eugenia Sheppard Award: Paper Magazine’s Kim Hastreiter

Eleanor Lambert Award: Vogue’s Tonne Goodman

And it goes without saying that the late Alexander McQueen will be given a Tribute Award.

And the nominees are…

For Womenswear Designer of the Year: Donna Karan, Marc Jacobs, and Alexander Wang.

Last year the award went to Rodarte’s sister-design duo Kate and Laura Mulleavy. While Donna Karen seems the front runner in this category, wouldn’t it be amazing if relative newcomer Alexander Wang won?  That being said, while it’s of the utmost importance to celebrate brilliant newbies onto the fashion block, the CFDA should also reward those who have been around forever. This one is a tough call.

For Menswear Designer of the Year: Tom Ford, Michael Bastian and David Neville and Marcus Wainwright of Rag & Bone.

Last year this award resulted in a tie between Scott Sternberg of Band of Outsiders and Italo Zucchelli of Calvin Klein . This year, the winner is dependent upon whether the Association is leaning toward welcoming in the new (in which case we’d love to see the Rag & Bone boys take home the prize) or applauding the old (it’s still exhilarating to see Tom Ford in a tux).

Accessory Designer of the Year: Jacobs, Proenza Schouler’s Jack McCollough, Lazaro Hernandez and Alexis Bittar

The Swarovski Award for new, emerging talent in the Womenswear Category: Prabal Gurung, Joseph Altuzarra and Jason Wu

The Swarovski Award for Menswear: Simon Spurr, Patrik Ervell and Richard Chai

The Swarovski Award for Accessories: Dana Lorenz, Alexander Wang and Eddie Borgo

Earlier yesterday, the CFDA announced that the organization’s president, Diane von Furstenberg, would be continuing her tenure for another year. When asked about the decision, the designer said, “I am happy that they love me and I love them. There is so much more to do and we’re doing it.” We are happy too, DVF.

It appears as though this year’s awards will be a strong indicator of where the fashion world will be going in the years to come. Do the industry’s most influential decision makers still rely on their old-favorites, or are they welcoming some of the fresh, new faces? All shall be revealed in July.

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