Monday, June 8, 2015


Antwerp is climbing up he ranks of Global Fashion Capitals
All the world is an arena where the fashion warlords vie for top position in the global marketplace.While the 'Big Four' leaders---New York, Paris, London and Milan have captured first place in the race for fashion supremacy--- emerging cities, such as Seoul, Shanghai, Berlin, Istanbul, Johannesburg, Sao Paulo, Mumbai and Stockholm are also on the quest to rise to global prominence.  Such is the topic of The Museum at FIT's exhibition, GLOBAL FASHION CAPITALS. No need to take a trip abroad to see all the fashion diversity,  all you need do is to head over to The Museum at FIT and see the show, which runs through November 24, 2015.
    More than 70 garments and accessories by designers are on display ranging from the father of Haute Couture, Charles Frederick Worth's 1890 couture cape to a beaded fringe dress by Lagos Designer Lisa Folawiyo. Important to know that all garments are from the museum's permanent collection, and many of the designers have never before been featured in an American museum.
Big Park, dress, spring 2015, Seoul
As the New York Times noted in a 2008 article titled, "The Sun Never Sets on the Runway," at any given moment, somewhere in the world, a city is hosting a fashion week event. The question is: "Why Fashion." Well, honey, it's big business. Emerging cities realize the economic value of the fashion industry, as well as the value of fashion as a source of "soft power" to communicate identity and spread cultural influence throughout the world. The exhibition makes the case that multiple factors---from economic conditions to government support---combine to help create a relevant global fashion city. As a result, hundreds of cities worldwide have begun hosting fashion weeks in hopes of attracting international press. Whew!!! As a fashion editor it was tough enough to review the 'Big Four' fashion icons, but now other international cities are tugging at the fashion press to recognize their contribution to the fashion universe. Who will be the fifth city to top the list is any one's guess.
    India and China have both developed fashion industries from strong manufacturing bases and in recent years Mumbai has eclipsed New Dehli as India's fashion capital. Seoul, for one, has risen as one of Asia's most exciting fashion capitals during the last decade. With the support of the South Korean government fashion as a cultural export and brands such as LIE SANGBONG and Big Park are rapidly breaking into the fashion scene.
Yohji Yamamoto, corset, 1991, Tokyo 
Ariele Elia, a curator of the show said, "Cities vying for international recognition stimulates tremendous competition which also puts emphasis on designers to be even more creative." Elizabeth Way, co-curator worked in tandem with Ms. Elia to select and coordinate the garment selections and style the exhibit. It opens with a digital style map, featuring the most current global fashion trends.  Street style and runways images from 20 fashion capitals show an identity unique to each city. The exhibition then continues thematically by city, beginning with the established fashion capital, Paris, New York, London and Milan, followed by the emerging cities. There is a lot to cover and to discover that beyond our fashion borders there are cities worldwide with viable fashion centers, some fueled by their manufacturing industries.
    Ta Ta darlings, the FIT Fashion Museum is located at Seventh Avenue at 27th Street, hours: Tues-Fri noon-8pm, Sat. 10am-5pm.
Closed on Sunday. Admission is Free. Contact: 212.217-4558 or Fan mail welcome at  Visit Polly's Blogs at and in the left hand column click on the links to womendeterminedtosucceed, visionarymen, hiddentreasures
and poetryfromtheheart.

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