You wont find this designer competition on television being taken down by Tim Gunn, but you can bid onand if youre lucky, wina one-of-a-kind collectible from the Council of Fashion Designers of America/Vogue Fashion Funds 2010 Design Challenge. Beginning yesterday, January 31, through February 10, ten looks created specifically for iconic American brand Ann Taylor by the CVFF (Council/Vogue Fashion Fund) finalists of 2010 are on auction through eBay.
The CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund was established to support emerging American design talent and help them find continued success in the fashion industry, says Meredith Melling Burke, Vogues Fashion Market Director of the endowment created to support the next generation of American fashion designers by offering them business mentoring and financial awards. Each year, our ten Finalists are put through a series of ‘challenges’ and are evaluated on their overall performance throughout the (approximately) five-month process.??
For the Design Challenge, our 2010 finalists Joseph Altuzarra, Billy Reid, Christian Cota, Eddie Borgo, Gregory Parkinson, Moss Lipow, Pamela Love, Paul Marrow, Oliver Helden of Loden Dager, Prabal Gurung and Robert Geller were asked by Ann Taylor to create a look for the modern professional woman.”
Lisa Axelson, Ann Taylors Senior Vice President of Design, asked the ten finalists to set the next major trend in career wear, relevant for todays modern woman.? They were tasked to make uniquely modern interpretations of Ann Taylors classic trench coat, shirt dress, leopard print and accessories.??
Vogues Meredith Melling Burke and CFDA Executive Director, Steven Kolb, answer our questions.???
The Inside Source: Why did Vogue and the CFDA want to work with Ann Taylor as 2010 Design Challenge sponsor? What are you looking for in a fashion line when brokering a Design Challenge initiative???
Steven Kolb: Christine Beauchamp, president of Ann Taylor Stores, had a meeting with Anna Wintour. In the meeting they talked about the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund and our efforts to support emerging talent. Afterward I went to see Christine who was so enthusiastic and ready to help in anyway. We wanted a design challenge that pushed the designers and had relevance to the marketplace. Ann Taylor was the right fit. ??
TIS: Did you come up with idea of the eBay auction (we know you’re an eBay fan!)? Why is eBay a good fit for this project over another means of selling the dresses like an event with a silent auction?
SK: Ann Taylor came up with eBay. CFDA has done other eBay sales and auctions before. It has such great reach and shoppers who know fashion, so it was a match.
TIS: Women are more stylish than ever when it comes to dressing for work. Why do you think that is???
Meredith Melling Burke: Women are increasingly confident in the influential role they play in todays workforce. This comes across in the way they dress. Women no longer feel like they have to dress like men in order to earn their respect as professionals. Michelle Obama is the perfect example of thisher personal style is equal parts powerful, sophisticated, and feminine.??
TIS: Do you have a favorite eBay purchase???
SK: I got an original Larry Fink photograph many years ago. I think it was part of a corporate collection from a company that shut down. It was taken near Larrys studio in Pennsylvania.
Meredith Barnett is the Editorial Director of The Inside Source, a digital style magazine presented by eBay. The Inside Source writer Amy Flurry authored this article in its original form.