Vision Care Product News

FEB 2017

Product information for optical people.

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Page 29 of 75

By Kaitlyn Robertson Founded in 1962, the Council of Fashion De- signers of America (CFDA) boasts a member- ship of more than 500 of the industry's foremost womenswear, menswear, accessory and jewelry designers. Fast forward to 2014, when four eye- wear designers from within the CFDA—Blake Kuwahara, Gai Gherardi, Selima Salaun and Christian Roth—joined forces to create a sub- committee called the Eyewear Designers of the CFDA (edCFDA). is working group aims to inspire, empower and promote the eyewear industry as a whole, according to the group's mission statement. Currently, the edCFDA comprises Barbara McReynolds and Gai Gherardi of l.a. Eyeworks; Shane Baum of Leisure Society; Robert Marc of Robert Marc New York; Selima Salaun of Seli- ma Optique; Daniel Silberman and Justin Sal- guero of Illesteva; Garrett Leight; Larry Leight; Grant Krajecki and Natalie Levy of Grey Ant; Jeff Press of Morgenthal Frederics; Patty Perrei- ra of Barton Perreira; Blake Kuwahara of Blake Kuwahara Eyewear; and Christian Roth of Christian Roth Eyewear. Roth currently serves as the committee's spokesperson. EYEWEAR IS FASHION, TOO! "In the entire landscape of fashion, eyewear is still a bit of a stepchild," explained Kuwahara. e edCFDA aims to pool its collective resourc- es in order to give the eyewear industry more he and secure its equally prominent place with- in the fashion world. Steven Kolb, president and CEO of the CFDA, stated, "e formation of the eyewear designers of the CFDA gives credit to the important role that these designers play not only in the accessories space, but in the Ameri- can fashion industry at large." Salaun credits the power of group network- ing as one of the benefits of the edCFDA, as membership comes with resources and con- nections within the fashion world. Addtional- ly, Salaun cites being "certified" by the CFDA as a major plus: "e CFDA stamp is crucial for the boutiques…to be part of it means that we are creative enough and have a successful business., Salaun Says." COMPETITION AND COLLABS While each member of the edCFDA is a com- petitor of the others, many carry each other's product in their boutiques. Additionally, they engage in special collaborations such as the Blake Kuwahara x l.a. Eyeworks line for spring/ summer '17. For a future season, Morgenthal Frederics plans to team up with Rosie Assoulin. "Raising the visibility of eyewear as a category is a mutual benefit," Kuwahara said. What helps one of us, helps all of us." Similarly, Baum likens the collaborations to musical artists: when one artist appears on another's album, the fan bases for each are exposed to the material. e edCFDA offers the opportunity for de- signers to share information and insights with one another, according to Marc and Press, sparking greater creativity. "All members have their own identity, history and design philos- ophy—we complement each other and have a VCPN 28 February 2017 COME TOGETHER The eyewear team within the Council of Fashion Designers of America places a premium on empower- ing the industry. Find out what else makes these optical artists such assets to the fashion world at large. 1 2 3 Eye we a r & Fa s h i o n

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