Why the CFDA Made a Book of Instagrams

CEO Steven Kolb explains.
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Dhani Mau
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CEO Steven Kolb explains.
Steven Kolb. Photo: Joe Schildhorn/BFANYC.com

Steven Kolb. Photo: Joe Schildhorn/BFANYC.com

Few platforms have had as profound an impact on the fashion industry as Instagram — and the industry's governing body has set out to recognize the contribution the photo-sharing app has made since its launch in 2010. In addition to presenting Instagram with the Media Award at the forthcoming CFDA Awards, the CFDA is also releasing "Designers on Instagram: #Fashion" a real, physical book set to hit shelves on April 14. It's exactly what it sounds like: photos that designers have posted to their Instagram accounts, curated and presented in hardcover, captions and hashtags included. It will cost $19.95.

At a launch party for the book at Bloomingdale's in New York Wednesday evening, we took the opportunity to ask CFDA CEO Steven Kolb why the organization decided to put Instagrams — which are all available for free, on Instagram — in book format. For one, he says that it's not uncommon for the CFDA to publish books: "Designers on Instagram" is its 10th. "The books that really are popular are the ones that give a glimpse into the lives of designers, and Instagram is such an inside look at a person’s life," Kolb explained. "So we just thought populating that all together in a print book... would be a good way to share that insider glimpse."

Bringing all the images together in a book also changes the way you look at them, Kolb argued. "You start to see the artistic side of Instagram, and the creative side of it. It’s more than just a posting of a picture; it’s really a visual statement and collectively putting that together, you really see the power of it."

Public-facing content is also big for the CFDA these days — it recently hired a new editorial and communications director from WWD, Marc Karimzadeh, and has begun beefing up the editorial side of its website. Expect more content, both online and off, from the organization going forward.

Photo: Joe Schildhorn/BFANYC.com

Photo: Joe Schildhorn/BFANYC.com