Since working with Isabella Blow in the '00s, Nadja Swarovski and her fashion team have made it their responsibility to support designers--both emerging and established--during fashion week and beyond. This season, Swarovski will underwrite the shows of several important New York, London, Milan, and Paris designers. In New York, this includes:
Goldin's presence is particularly exciting as she's a Brit showing in New York, which means her critically-lauded knitwear will be introduced to more American buyers. Of course, Swarovski is supporting plenty of talent across the pond this season: House of Holland, J.W Anderson, Richard Nicoll, Holly Fulton, Erdem, Giles, Mary Katrantzou, Marios Schwab, and Roksanda Ilincic all made the cut. There will be more shows announced for Milan and Paris, and we know for sure that Hussein Chalayan is one of them.
Fashionista is happy to be working with Swarovski again this year, reporting from the trenches at each show. But we also wanted to give you a bit of insight into how the Swarovski Collective works. Other than an injection of cash and access to the brand's crystals, how do the designers benefit, and how does Swarovski benefit?
To answer that question, we must go back to 1999. Designers have always used crystals in their work, but Swarovski began sponsoring some of that work in the late '90s, starting with Alexander McQueen. Since then, Swarovski has worked on various projects to elevate its name within the fashion industry, from sponsoring the CFDA's young designer awards to working with Rodarte on those now-infamous Black Swan costumes.
But it's the fashion week sponsorship that proves the biggest commitment, both for the designer and Swarovski. Not only does the designer apply for the sponsorship--which of course includes financial support--he or she must present a business plan to the Swarovski team, as well as a convincing argument for how crystal will be incorporated into that season's garments. Swarovski takes that latter part very seriously, as they should. After all, the reason for supporting these young designers is to keep the Swarovski brand fresh in the eyes of fashion industry's influencers. Teaming up with internationally recognized brands, whether the latest It designer or a storied fashion house, is a genius marketing strategy.
It also helps that Nadja is genuine about her love for fashion and the designers she supports. "It is so inspiring to watch the designers present something unexpected and impactful on the catwalk and expose the versatility of Swarovski crystal once again,” she says.
So congrats to the New York designers showing crystalized pieces this week--we look forward to seeing how creative you get.