CFDA Discusses New Strategy: New York Fashion Week Makeover, Stronger Partnerships, More

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2014 has brought about many changes including a new strategy for the CFDA, the Council of Fashion Designers of America. Last year, they hired Boston Consulting group in order to revamp its mission and overall brand for the years to come. “[The mission] needed to be clarified,” Jean-Marc Bellaiche, managing director at Boston Consulting Group(BCG), told Business of Fashion.”We needed to paint a precise picture of what each member, and all of the stakeholders, get from the association.”

The consulting group worked closed with the council’s Steven Kolba and Diane Von Furstenberg to rework the mission statement. They were able to reduce it from 6 sentences to one line: “The mission of the CFDA is to strengthen the influence and success of American Fashion Designers in the global economy.” The mission statement is reflective of the four areas that the CFDA will target: NY Fashion Week, education, partnerships and the manufacturing industry in the city. New York fashion week should be easier to navigate with a schedule that is less crowded and jammed with shows, while also taking into consideration the multiple locations throughout the city in which the shows are held. The Culture Shed at Hudson Yards is being considered as the main show space upon its completion in 2017.

“What’s the value of a centralized venue? How do you make that meaningful to designers? That’s where Diane as an individual – and as the president of the CFDA and part of the Culture Shed board – comes in, and what the BCG study has helped us understand,” Kolb said.

In the arena of education and partnerships, the CFDA has plans to strengthen relationships with existing partners, scholarship initiatives, and international schools. Through the consulting project, the CFDA became aware of the weak partnerships that lacked structure and strategy. “Some of the partnerships had been ad hoc because the CFDA was getting hit up every day with different offers,” Sarah Willersdorf, principal at BCG, told Business of Fashion.”We gave different suggestions on how to categorize [these partnerships], understand the value for the designers, how they should be priced and which should be strategic versus one-off.” President von Furstenberg was please with the outcome of their work with BCG, comparing it to working with a therapist.

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Cultivating Your Personal Style

We all know her: the well put together women that seems to have an effortless signature style. However, it is difficult for those who consider themselves to be less stylish to develop their own personal style. How exactly do you even develop a signature style in the first place? Realize that that effortlessly chic woman has been developing her personal style through a process of trial and error over a period of time. She has learned about what looks work for her, what doesn’t and how to incorporate the latest trends into her wardrobe without losing sight of who she is. She has a creative mind and likes to express herself visually.

The one thing that all creative people have in common is the search for inspiration and a muse. This does not mean to copy someone else’s style, but instead study what some of your favorite celebrities are wearing, creating Pinterest boards to collect some of your favorite items and outfit ideas as well as read magazines to see what’s in style and how you can incorporate it into your wardrobe.

Below are 10 quick tips for helping you to cultivate your own personal style.

1. Know the character you want to portray. In the same way that a costume helps to define a character in a movie or show, the clothes you choose are a way to showcase your personality and character to others. By knowing what you want to communicate, you will be able to find your signature style easier.

2. Following the trends can be expensive and pointless. Every single trend will not work for you, therefore, you have to be more selective about what you invest your money in and how it fits into your already existing wardrobe.

3. Always be mindful to remain consistent in your style choices but also modern.

4. An often ignored part of your personal style, but a very important one is your hair. Your hair style is equally a part of your signature style as your clothing is. Learn what works for you and what you feel comfortable in. Are you going to stay conservative, get a new cut, color, style? Whatever you choose, it should speak to the personal style you are attempting to cultivate.

5. Style is not only about fashion, it’s a lifestyle. From the phone case that you carry to the perfume you wear and the music you listen to. All of the pieces of your personal style should work together to tell a story.

6. Don’t be afraid to experiment or bring trends back. If you haven’t realized, fashion is recycled each and every season, so what may not have worked for you a few years ago, may be perfect now. Fabrics have changed, your body has changed and the way you wear it will be totally different. Take some time to keep classic pieces. They will be staples in your wardrobe for years to come.

7. Make sure the clothes you have fit immaculately, meaning that they do not lead to constant tugging, fussing, and fidgeting. The fit of an article of clothing is what differentiates it between being mediocre and being great. Have you seen a man in a tailored suit, compared to one he just wore off a rack? Fit is everything. Be mindful of how the clothes fit before you purchase them. Ill-fitted clothing affect your confidence and your attempt to be effortless will be a failed one.

8. We all need that go-to item that is in our wardrobe. Make an effort to find something that works great on your body shape and makes you look and feel confident. Once you have found this item, purchase it in multiple colors and stock up on it. That way, you will always be ready for any last minute outings, events and dates.

Source: http://www.blogher.com/how-cultivate-your-personal-style