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Well, we’d hate to say we told you so, but Paul Andrew has been a winner in our eyes since his feminine, edgy collection for Spring ’14 hit our floors. Color us just plain extra happy then, that the footwear genius was awarded the CFDA’s highest honor this week in New York. On the occasion of this Very Big Deal, we spoke to the designer himself as well as the in-house tastemaker who knows his work best. 

“As you can imagine, I’m on cloud nine right now,” Paul Andrew told us. “I’m so excited and so proud to receive this accolade. It is such an incredible honor and an overwhelming feeling of gratitude. This is literally a dream come true. The CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund program has put so many small designers on the map, it has not sunk in that I am now part of that class. To the shoe obsessives of the world, I say ‘stay tuned’! There is much more coming from Paul Andrew; I have ambitions to launch a men’s collection, e-commerce, and am looking to further elaborate on the core offering in my women’s collection, and while there is significant work to be done and much more focus and energy required I could not be more motivated.”

‘Aztec’ Fringe Suede Sandal

“Our attraction to Paul Andrew stems from his unique designs, which embody both a sexy refinement and focus on fit and comfort. He is genuinely engaged in making women look and feel good,” said John Langston from our designer shoe team. “We’re eager to see the momentum behind his creative direction, lending credibility to his new must-haves in seasons to come.”

SHOP: Paul Andrew

Congratulations to Greg Chait of the Elder Statesman for winning this year’s $300,000 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Prize! Not to mention the runners-up–Tabitha Simmons and Jennifer Meyer Maguire—who will each receive $100,000. We couldn’t be happier for the winning trio and all the nominees; we’re so excited to see what’s in store for these talented, up-and-coming designers!

See all of our CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund coverage, including designer shows and video.

Time for a field trip to Los Angeles for the 10 designers, where it’s all about a celeb-filled runway show at Chateau Marmont styled entirely by Vogue.

Don’t miss checking back next week—the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund 2012 winners will finally be revealed!

Episode 5 of The Fashion Fund: Tiffany & Co. Challenge. The finalists are given six weeks to create new looks inspired by Breakfast at Tiffany’s or The Great Gatsby. The result? We get to see some fresh and gorgeous designs–not to mention a $10K pair of sunglasses.

Which is your favorite so far?

Episode 4 of The Fashion Fund brings the judges into the final 10 designers’ studios and showrooms for a little one-on-one time. The designers also receive their first challenge after seeing themselves and their work published in the November issue of Vogue–enough to make anyone swoon!

The final 10 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund finalists, photographed by Peter Linbergh for Vogue.

Let’s catch up with the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund’s journey to select the next lucky designer to win its prestigious award this November. Season 2 is on a roll with 3 of 7 episodes already live, which follow the 10 finalists and the panel of judges—some of fashion’s most influential personalities—who are going to have to make one tough decision.

Episode 1: Introductions & Finalists
Vogue takes us through the Fashion Fund’s previous winners and the importance of this program for young and up-and-coming designers.

Out of hundreds of designers, 50 were invited to submit official applications to be reviewed by this year’s judges panel, comprised of a handful of fashion’s heavy-hitters, including Anna Wintour, Reed Krakoff, Diane von Furstenberg and our own EVP of Designer, Jeffrey Kalinsky.

Find out which 10 designers made the cut.

Episode 2: One-on-One with the Judges
Each of the finalists gets a quick—but important—15 minutes to show off their collections and personality to the judges. Nervous designers strut their stuff, and a lot of poker faces ensue.

Episode 3: New York Fashion Week
The finalists get snapped by photog Peter Linbergh for the Vogue November issue before debuting their spring 2013 collections to the world in New York City.

Check back next Tuesday for episode 4, when the designers face a new challenge and a studio visit from the judges. Who are you rooting for so far?

September 8, 2012

Front Row at Suno

New York brand Suno was one of 10 labels chosen as a finalist in the Council of Fashion Designers of America’s 2012 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund awards, which provides support to up-and-coming designers. We’re getting in on the action for spring, buying items from each finalist brand and selling them in special pop-up boutiques inside selected Nordstrom stores.

Suno unveiled its spring/summer 2013 collection last night, and we couldn’t be more thrilled. But before we dig into the runway photos, check out the star-studded front row:

Solange Knowles (Beyonce’s little sister), in Suno. She’s the face of many a fashion campaign lately. I adore her style.

New York Times street fashion photographer and documentary star Bill Cunningham. (I first asked to take his photo and he said, “No, I’m working,” so I had to sneak around to get this shot.)

French blogger Garance Doré. (She’s incredibly sweet and approachable. Note the microphone on her shirt—a camera guy accompanied her to the show for her ongoing “Pardon My French” video series.)

The blondie on the right is Marie Claire‘s senior fashion editor Zanna Roberts Rassi, who occasionally hosts Project Runway specials.

At right is the inimitable Anna Dello Russo, in Versace. Let’s check out her full outfit:

Cute! Love the Bvlgari watch and her ‘A’ earrings.

Vogue‘s Lynn Yeager. (I love fashion ladies who have a signature look. You’re always gonna see a red bob and kabuki lips on Ms. Yeager, who was super nice and gracious.)

Street Peeper photographer Phil Oh and a couple of his regular subjects: Shiona Turini, market and beauty editor for CR Fashion Book (Carine Roitfeld’s new endeavor) and Caroline Issa, Tank‘s executive fashion editor.

Bloggers Natalie Joos and Suzy Bubble. (I also spotted Natalie front row at BCBGMAXAZRIA’s show on Thursday.)

Jewelry designers Phoebe and Annette Stephens, and DJ Chelsea Leyland.

Time to head to my next show. I’ll update again soon!

- Mary

Earlier this week, the 10 finalists for the 2012 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund were announced. As a proud underwriter of the Fashion Fund for six years, we’d like to offer our congratulations to all of the designer finalists and announce some exciting news of our own!

Established in 2003, the Fashion Fund helps emerging American designers continue to express their talents and grow their business with a $300,000 prize for the winner and $100,000 each for the runners-up (chosen in November).

Our own EVP of Designer Merchandising, Jeffrey Kalinsky, who sits on the Fashion Fund Selection Committee, says, “I’m proud to represent us on the committee. I’m even more proud of Nordstrom’s six-year commitment so far to underwriting the Fashion Fund, which is a great way to support American fashion by helping foster young designers’ businesses.”

Speaking of support, this year we decided to participate in a brand-new way. In spring 2013, we’ll be erecting Fashion Fund Finalist Shops in a handful of our stores as well as Treasure&Bond in New York City. Based on what we see from the designers at Fashion Week in September, our buyers will be curating favorite pieces from all finalist designers that customers will be able to shop right in our stores. Imagine all that serious talent available in one place—it gets any fashion lover’s heart racing. “Being able to showcase the class of 2012 in our store is an exciting opportunity for our customers and for all of us at Nordstrom.”—Jeffrey

Keep an eye out for more from us about the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund and its finalists—we’ve got a few more tricks up our sleeves!

In the meantime, meet the 2012 finalists:
Andrea Lieberman | A.L.C.
Greg Armas | Assembly New York
Sofia Sizzi | Giulietta
Justin Salguero, Daniel Silberman, Alina Silberman | Illesteva
Jennifer Fisher | Jennifer Fisher Jewelry
Jennifer Meyer Maguire | Jennifer Meyer
Max Osterweis & Erin Beatty | Suno
Tabitha Simmons | Tabitha Simmons
Greg Chait | The Elder Statesman
Wes Gordon | Wes Gordon

Who are you crossing your fingers for?

CFDA members collage courtesy of the CFDA.

June 13, 2012

2012 CFDA Award Winners

We’d like to offer our congratulations to all the winners and nominees at the 2012 CFDA Awards, with a special shout-out to those winners who are a part of the Nordstrom family. 

Billy Reid – Menswear Designer of the Year

Reed Krakoff – Accessories Designer of the Year

Phillip Lim – Swarovski Award for Menswear

Tabitha Simmons (middle) – Swarovski Award for Accessory Design

Images courtesy of BFA, CFDA and Parsons.