1. Fashion Week
The Scoop: You can tell when it’s Fashion Week in the city, with all the wellheeled editors, retailers, models, designers, photographers, and stylists from all over the world around town. They fill the tents in Bryant Park by day and the city’s restaurants and clubs by night.
Behind the Scenes: IMG produces Seventh on Sixth, erecting the huge tents in the park twice a year for a week. Showgoers stay on top of all the news and gossip with Fashion Week’s own newspaper, The Daily. Olympus took over the title sponsorship contract from Mercedes-Benz in 2004, and provides a high technology press lounge. Getty Images is the official photographer. Feb. 4-11; Sept. 9-16
2. Council of Fashion Designers of America's Awards
The Scoop: The CFDA awards recognize contributors to American fashion, and draw the biggest names in the fashion universe for a night of dining, drinking, and self congratulating.
Behind the Scenes: For the 2004 awards at the New York Public Library, KCD’s design included a massive Swarovski peridot crystal curtain. Hank Tomashevski catered in a dining room set like a 1930’s supper club, and newly minted American Idol Fantasia Barrino performed before presenters like Anna Wintour, Isaac Mizrahi, and Beyoncé doled out awards to Miuccia Prada, Donna Karan, Tom Ford, and other fashion bigwigs. It’s rumored that the event will move from its home at the library to a new location. June 6
3. Fifi Awards
The Scoop: The Fragrance Foundation’s annual FiFis attract industry players as well as celebrities—ranging from A-list on down—for a cocktail reception and dinner. The awards presentation recognizes creators of the sweetest-smelling contributions to the marketplace.
Behind the Scenes: Last year, Dalzell Productions produced a scented event in hues of pink and peach in the Hammerstein Ballroom. Great Performances catered, David Beahm designed the decor, and Pink Inc. created a massive tensile fabric sculpture. Dalzell will produce the 33rd annual awards this year at the Hammerstein. April 7
4. Fashion Group International's Night of Stars Benefit
The Scoop: The Fashion Group International has honored the industry’s biggest tastemakers with this gala since 1983—and it always draws celebrity attendees of the highest order. Recent guests have included Sarah Jessica Parker, Diane von Furstenberg, Harvey Keitel, Sean Combs, and Baz Luhrmann.
Behind the Scenes: The Fashion Group produces the event in-house and handles its own PR, with Nancy Mindes, Leo Preziosi, and Miriam Driot as co-directors of special events. Two years ago, Roberto Cavalli custom designed the table linens, and last year Dolce & Gabbana decorated the space in black and white with lavender accents. The annual benefit typically takes place at Cipriani 42nd Street in the fall. Oct.
5. International Beauty Show New York
The Scoop: American Salon and American Spa magazines present this annual show, which features nearly 600 exhibitors and draws more than 52,000 attendees to the Javits Center for the latest in beauty products, services, technology, and education. The IBS is limited to beauty industry attendees, but also attracts lots of journalists, registering 350 members of the press from 10 countries at the last show. In addition to exhibits, it offers free classes in haircutting, skin care, makeup application, and business, and runs concurrently with the American Spa Expo and Skincare Congress.
Behind the Scenes: Dana Lupton is the group show director for Advanstar Communications. This year’s show will fill four huge exhibit halls at Javits. April 17-19
6. March of Dimes Million Dollar Beauty Ball
The Scoop: This annual fund-raiser benefits babies: It raises more than $1 million annually, as you might expect from its name. About 700 top beauty, cosmetic, and fashion industry execs attend.
Behind the Scenes: Last year’s event at the Waldorf=Astoria had a beachy theme that included tropical decor and a beach scene sculpted from chocolate on dessert plates. This year’s event at the Waldorf will honor Avon Products’ Susan Kropf. Feb. 7
7. American Cancer Society Dream Ball
The Scoop: This 21-yearold ball attracts high-level beauty industry leadership (and those who want to network with them) to benefit the ACS’ “Look Good…Feel Better” program, which helps cancer patients manage changes to their appearance resulting from chemotherapy. Last year’s celebrity-studded ball raised $2.2 million.
Behind the Scenes: ACS special events senior director Denise Anderson oversees the well-established ball with director Regina Limchayseng. Major sponsors include Mary Kay cosmetics and Avon Products. The event typically takes place at the Waldorf=Astoria in the autumn. Sept. 13
Read about the rest of New York's Top 100 Events...
Photos: Mark Mainz/Getty Images (Fashion Week runway)
This story originally appeared in the February/March 2005 issue of the BiZBash Event Style Reporter.
1. Fashion Week