Tonight is the night! The CFDA will hold its annual awards show at Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City for the first time, and although the event won't be televised live anymore, that won't stop the organization from throwing a memorable evening soirée, including a seated dinner. From the celebrity host and expected performers and presenters to a few honorary winners and nominees, we already have a decent idea of what to expect. (We're especially excited for Gucci's Alessandro Michele to take the stage for an acceptance speech.) Though, we're still waiting to find out this year's fashion icon award recipient, which is traditionally announced in advance. Last we heard, the CFDA was planning to keep that winner under wraps, so we came up with a few predictions of our own.
Joel McHale will the take stage as maestro for tonight's seated dinner event, following in the footsteps of James Corden, John Waters, Seth Meyers and more. Those who follow celebrities (and "Community") as much as fashion will recognize McHale from his longtime hosting gig for "The Soup" on E!, so tonight's job should be a breeze for him. And it seems like being something of a fashion outsider is a top requirement for the hosting role: President and Chief Executive Officer of the CFDA Steven Kolb explained that his choice for McHale was mainly to "keep the night lively, topical, and unexpected."
Judging from his fashion pop quiz over at The Cut, McHale will most likely greet Anna Wintour as Anna Summour. He also gave The New York Times a tip for attendees tonight: "If you don't have a sense of humor about yourself, you're not going to enjoy it."
According to the CFDA, former Dior girl and actress Riley Keough will introduce "a live fashion moment." As for the awards, Claire Danes will present Womenswear Designer of the Year; Alexander Skarsgård will present the Menswear Designer of the Year; and, "Broad City" actress and on-the-rise fashion darlings Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson will take the stage together to present the Accessory Designer of the Year. As newly announced brand ambassador, Karlie Kloss, alongside Ansel Elgort, will present all three of the Swarovski Awards for womenswear, menswear and accessories designer.
Those presenting the honorary winners with their awards are as follows:
Geoffrey Beene Lifetime Achievement Award: To be presented to Norma Kamali by Michael Kors
Founders Award: To be presented to Donna Karan by Calvin Klein
International Award: To be presented to Alessandro Michele of Gucci by Anna Wintour
Media Award: To be presented to Imran Amed for Business of Fashion by Alexa Chung
Actor and Broadway star, Michael C. Hall will perform a special tribute to the late David Bowie, who will also be honored with the Board of Directors’ Tribute tonight. (Tilda Swinton will accept the award on his behalf.) Earlier this year, Hall starred in "Lazarus," a musical written by Bowie.
Jennifer Hudson will also perform to close the CFDA Awards, which is about all we know for now. However, her amazing tribute performance of "Purple Rain" after Prince's death at the end of one of her April showings of "The Color Purple" on Broadway has us hoping she'll pay homage to the legendary musician once again tonight.
How to Watch It
For a hot second, tonight's award show was going to be broadcast on television. But for reasons unknown, the CFDA decided "to not move forward with a television broadcast opportunity this year." Instead, the organization promises to provide viewers "a front row seat" to tonight's event through its social media channels. Plus, we expect the attendees who happen to have Snapchat will be live-documenting their evening on the social media platform as well. In fact, Karlie Kloss will be taking over Glamour's Snapchat account (@glamourmag) to document herself getting ready for Awards, the show itself and the after-party.
Marie Claire fashion editor Zanna Roberts Rassi will cover the red carpet on behalf of CFDA; however, you won't be able to catch her coverage until Tuesday, also on CFDA.com.
The New Mentorship Program
The winners of the three Swarovski Awards will also be a part of the CFDA Swarovski Emerging Talent Award Mentorship Program, which will launch after the ceremony. The new program will focus on marketing strategy, sales, retail and local partner production on a global level. In addition to one-on-one mentorship sessions and support through 2016, the winners will travel to the Swarovski headquarters in Wattens, Austria — one outing in a series of trips, according to Swarovski — to go through the crystal company's archives for research, innovation and business development purposes.
Womenswear Designer of the Year: Joseph Altuzarra for Altuzarra; Marc Jacobs; Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough for Proenza Schouler; Kate and Laura Mulleavy for Rodarte; Ashley Olsen and Mary-Kate Olsen for The Row.
Who won last year: Ashley Olsen and Mary-Kate Olsen for The Row
Menswear Designer of the Year: Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne for Public School, David Neville and Marcus Wainwright for Rag & Bone, Tim Coppens and Todd Snyder.
Who won last year: Tom Ford
Accessories Designer of the Year: Joseph Altuzarra for Altuzarra; Irene Neuwirth; Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough for Proenza Schouler; Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen for The Row; Floriana Gavriel and Rachel Mansur for Mansur Gavriel.
Who won last year: Tabitha Simmons
Swarovski Award for Womenswear: Brandon Maxwell; Laura Kim and Fernando Garcia for Monse; Ryan Roche.
Who won last year: Rosie Assoulin
Swarovski Award for Menswear: John Elliott; Rio Uribe for Gypsy Sport; Alex, Matthew, Samantha Orley for Orley.
Who won last year: Shayne Oliver for Hood by Air
Swarovski Award for Accessories Designer of the Year: Aurora James, Gigi Burris, Paul Andrew.
Who won last year: Rachel Mansur and Floriana Gavriel for Mansur Gavriel