Fashion-Forward: Spring 2014 Events


by Christina Parrella, 11/09/2013

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New York City is one of the world's great fashion capitals. Luxurious boutiques, designer flagships and fast-fashion emporiums offer stylish goods in every corner of the five boroughs. Runway shows lend the start of every season a theatrical grandeur, but talks, exhibitions, store openings, exclusive collaborations and sample sales round out the offerings. Glamour is more accessible here than it is anywhere else on earth. Read our calendar below for stylish seasonal tips, and remember to check back for updates.

Stores & Sales

April 9 and 27, May 13 and 25
Free Garment District Neighborhood Walking Tours 
Explore New York City's Garment District during this one-and-a-half-to-two-hour tour, led by Mike Kaback. You might visit a private showroom, a sample sale, Mood Designer Fabrics and more, all while learning about the neighborhood's historic background and importance. The tour—which starts at 10am on weekdays and 2pm on Sundays at the northeast corner of Seventh Avenue and West 39th Street—is free, but reservations are required; you can make them by emailing

May 12
Open Market
Highline Stages, 440 W. 15th St., (212) 206-8280
This pop-up market welcomes dozens of Meatpacking District businesses for a night that's equal parts fundraising, fashion and food. Dozens of local Meatpacking District businesses offer drinks and dishes, as well as apparel and accessories at sample-sale prices. All proceeds benefit the Meatpacking District Improvement Association's neighborhood initiatives. Hosts include hotelier Andre Balazs, Diane von Furstenberg and Theory's Andrew Rosen. 

WindowsWear Fashion Window Walking Tour
Departs from Macy's Herald Square, 151 W. 34th St., 646-827-2288
Explore New York City's fashion displays with a WindowsWear walking tour. This two-hour jaunt gives insight into the history of the industry and how the City's most famous retailers dress up their windows. Tour goers will also visit shopping spots made famous in shows such as Sex and the City and Modern Family. Tickets must be purchased in advance; the schedule is available at

Through April 19
Elegance in an Age of Crisis: Fashions of the 1930s
The Museum at FIT, Seventh Avenue and West 27th Street, 212-217-4558
Clothing in the 1930s was modest, elegant and innovative, reflecting the socio-economic environment of the time. Women's fashion began to shy away from the glamorous decadence and boxiness of clothing in the 20s, into a more streamlined, slim-fitting and feminine silhouette. This exhibition examines the role that bespoke designers, couturiers and dressmakers had on fashion during this era and the swath of new textiles and materials used to create much softer and lighter garments. Along with women's wear, this exhibition also surveys the techniques that emerged in menswear and tailoring during this time.

Through April 20
Fashion Jewelry: The Collection of Barbara Berger
Museum of Arts and Design, 2 Columbus Circle, 212-299-7777
Avid couture jewelry collector Barbara Berger may have one of the most coveted collections around. Her loot includes custom-made necklaces, brooches and bracelets from Chanel, Yves Saint Laurent and Dior—all meant to be worn with haute couture. The pieces are further highlighted in a new book, Fashion Jewelry: The Collection of Barbara Berger.

Through April 23
Folk Couture: Fashion and Folk Art
American Folk Art Museum, 2 Lincoln Square, 212-595-9533

What is the relationship between fashion and folk art? This exhibition explores the two seemingly unrelated fields through the work of 13 designers who have created garments inspired by works of art in the museum’s collection. Handcrafted clothing hangs alongside the painting, sculpture, photograph or quilt it draws inspiration from. Featured designers include Michael Bastian, Chadwick Bell and Catherine Malandrino. 

Through April 30
The Museum at FIT, Seventh Avenue and West 27th Street, 212-217-4558
Trends may come and go, but in the fashion industry nothing ever really goes out of style for too long. Trend-ology focuses on a 250-year-old trend cycle—starting in the 18th century—and follows the emergence (and reemergence) of trends up into the current period. This exhibition features 100 flash-in-the-pan pieces including a tartan dress made in the early 1700s, a chunky gold Chanel necklace inspired by Salt-N-Pepa and a Murakami-designed Louis Vuitton satchel that was replicated ad nauseam. The show also touches on how trends develop and spread through various channels such as art, music and film, and how fast-fashion stores like H&M and Zara have contributed to the world of passé and beguiling trends.

Through June15
Bill Cunningham: The Façades Project
The New-York Historical Society, 170 Central Park W., 212-873-3400
Long before street-style bloggers, there was Bill Cunningham. The street photographer's impromptu fashion shots graced the pages of the Chicago Tribune and Women's Wear Daily, but he became a regular contributor to The New York Times after a candid shot of Greta Garbo in a well-cut coat caught the eye of Times editor Arthur Gelb. The Façades Project is an exhibition of Cunningham's eight-year-long photo essay work (titled Façades), which includes photographs of models dressed in period costumes against historic architectural backdrops. 

Gilded New York
The Museum of the City of New York, 1220 Fifth Ave., 212-534-1672
The Gilded Age in America was marked by industrialization and immense economic growth, which attracted immigrants from all over Europe. It was a period of poverty for many and ostentatious displays of wealth for some. This exhibition explores the mark the upper echelon left in NYC through costumes, jewelry, portraits and ornamental objects created from the mid-1870s through the early 20th century. The exhibition further surveys the establishment of the retail and luxury marketplace that can be credited with the City's place in the global fashion world.

Stores & Sales
April 10–12
Marissa Webb Sample Sale  
60-62 E  11th St.
Shop a range of pieces from the fall/winter 2013 collection, including outerwear, apparel and shoes. The sale runs 11am–7pm on Thursday and Friday, and noon–6pm on Saturday.

Saks Fifth Avenue, 611 Fifth Ave., 212-753-4000
Already home to a shoe floor with its own custom zip code, Saks expands the footwear offerings at its Fifth Avenue flagship with a seventh-floor sneaker shop. Dubbed Sneaks, the new department offers men's designer footwear and exclusive collaborations from labels including Fendi, Dsquared2 and Maison Martin Margiela. 

Dover Street Market
160 Lexington Ave., 646-837-7750
Curated by Comme des Garçons founder and designer Rei Kawakubo, this market blends up-and-coming and well-known brands into a colorful emporium of must-have clothing, accessories and shoes. It even reshuffles its stocks and displays every six months to make way for new themes and designers. The market's current rotation includes limited-edition Louis Vuitton goods from the Spring/Summer 2014 collection—the last one designed by Marc Jacobs. 

Rent the Runway at Henri Bendel
Henri Bendel, 712 Fifth Ave., 212-247-1100
Dress for the red carpet without the hefty price tag at Rent the Runway’s showroom at Henri Bendel. At almost 90% off retail prices, the popular website offers thrifty fashionistas the ability to borrow gowns, dresses and accessories for special occasions. At this first off-line location, renters (with the help of a personal stylist) can try on wardrobe and accessories from more than 175 brands, including Monique Lhuillier and Vera Wang. Fitting rooms are outfitted with a scanner and iPad, which allows shoppers to save their dress selections into a “virtual closet” that can be accessed anywhere. The showroom is located on the second floor of the department store.

Recently Opened
Goyard Men's Shop-in-Shop
Bergdorf Goodman, 745 5th Ave., 212-753-7300
French luggage and handbag maker Goyard has expanded its presence at Bergdorf Goodman with a men's shop-within-a-shop. The department will feature exclusive hand-painted products and limited-edition leather goods from the maison's 352 rue Saint Honoré shop in Paris. It'll also carry belts, wallets, umbrellas, gloves and even dog accessories, all of which can be monogrammed. 

677 Madison Ave., 212-439-6400
This exclusive bespoke men’s footwear company has been manufacturing made-to-measure shoes since 1895. They also offer a range of ready-to-wear shoes, accessories and suits that start at $900 and climb into the thousands. A pair of Berluti high-quality customized shoes, which start at around $5,700, take 50 hours to make and are generously rubbed with essential oils for up to an hour. The store is also home to its own in-store polisher tasked with nourishing and altering the shading of leather products. 

Looking Ahead
May 13–September 14
Multiple Exposures: Jewelry and Photography 
Museum of Arts and Design, 2 Columbus Circle, 212-299-7777
This exhibition explores the influence of photography on jewelry artists from the 19th century through the digital age. Pieces on display come from more than 80 international artists, and include an Abraham Lincoln daguerreotype pin fashioned with gingham and black ribbons.  

May 6 
Annie Leibovitz with Adam Gopnik
92 Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave., 212-415-5500
Known for her work in Vogue, Vanity Fair and Rolling Stone, famed photog Annie Leibovitz sits down with The New Yorker’s Adam Gopnik to discuss her career and work.  

May 8–August 10 
Charles James: Beyond Fashion 
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Fifth Avenue at 82nd Street, 212-535-7710
The Met celebrates the grand reopening of The Costume Institute’s galleries with a special exhibition dedicated to America’s first couturier, Charles James. The exhibition focuses on James’ design-making process, which involved much more than sketching. James constructed garments, using scenes and mathematics to achieve an architectural shape that accentuated the female hipline. His goal was to create a surrealist, weightless and visually stunning garment that appealed to a particular group of daring women. The exhibition features James's ball gowns from the 1930s through 1950s, as well as sketches, pattern swatches and partially completed works from his last studio in the Chelsea Hotel.

June 3–November 15
Exposed: A History of Lingerie
The Museum at FIT, Seventh Avenue and West 27th Street, 212-217-4558
This showcase examines the history of intimate apparel from the 18th century to the present. Featuring over 70 pieces, the collection highlights all things feminine and delicate. Silk, cotton and lace garments from designers like Christian Dior, Valerie Porr and Patricia Fieldwalker are among the intricate pieces on display. 

related venues/(9)

  1. 1
    Museum at The Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT)
    Seventh Ave. at 27th St.
    Manhattan – Chelsea
    NY 10001
  2. 2
    92nd Street Y
    1395 Lexington Ave.
    Manhattan – Upper East Side
    NY 10128
  3. 3
    The New-York Historical Society
    170 Central Park West
    Manhattan – Upper West Side
    NY 10024
  1. 4
    Museum of Arts and Design
    2 Columbus Circle
    Manhattan – Midtown West
    NY 10019
  2. 5
    Museum of the City of New York
    1220 Fifth Ave.
    Manhattan – East Harlem/El Barrio
    NY 10029
  3. 6
    Dover Street Market
    160 Lexington Ave.
    Manhattan – Murray Hill
    NY 10016
  1. 7
    Berluti Maison
    677 Madison Ave.
    Manhattan – Upper East Side
    NY 10065
  2. 8
    The Metropolitan Museum of Art
    Fifth Ave. at 82nd St.
    Manhattan – Upper East Side
    NY 10028
  3. 9
    Saks Fifth Avenue
    611 Fifth Ave.
    Manhattan – Midtown East
    NY 10022

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