After the launch of the CFDA's incredible Fashion Incubator, we heard rumblings that some of the designers initially asked to join were forced to decline the invitation. Why? Because they couldn't afford the space.
While we in no way think that the CFDA is to blame in this circumstance--what they do each year for fledgling designers is beyond admirable--we do wonder if the government could have chipped in a little more money so that the designers could work in the space at no cost. Most self-funded designers work out of their own homes. Which means spending $1,5000-$2,000 a month--even if that number is minimal compared to the typical cost of a similar space--is near-impossible.
For this particular initiative, the City of New York shelled out $200,000.
And while it's a good step, it still pales in comparison to what the City of London has done for the British Fashion Council.
Case in point: New York's $200,000 grant supports the Incubator space for the next three years, and remember, the designers still have to pay a good chunk of money to occupy it. Conversely, the City of London awarded the British Fashion Council a £4.2 million (about $5.2 million) grant in 2007 to be dispersed over the course of four years.
Do you think the CFDA should lobby the City of New York for more cash? Or should it continue to rely on corporate backers to get things done?