Best of 2009: Fashion's Night Out, the Citywide Retail Bonanza

New York's "Fashion's Night Out" shopping initiative, designed to get consumers back in stores, turned into a citywide festival.

December 16, 2009, 9:00 AM EST

One of the night's biggest gatherings was at Bergdorf Goodman, where Zac Posen spray painted in a window, Padma Lakshmi hosted a cook-off between designers, and Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen served as bartenders.

Photo: Jessica Torossian for BizBash

Conceived and organized by Vogue, the Council of Fashion Designers of America, and NYC & Company, “Fashion’s Night Out” rapidly evolved into one of the fashion trade’s largest efforts to target the public. On September 10, more than 800 retailers in all five New York boroughs—as well as in Los Angeles, Chicago, London, Milan, and Paris—wooed shoppers with celebrity appearances, performances, free cocktails, and sheer spectacle in hopes it would lift dwindling sales and restore confidence in the industry. Terry Lundgren, Macy’s chairman and chief executive officer, reported that his store sold more than half its inventory and raised more than $200,000 for the September 11 Memorial & Museum.

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