NJAL Lands in New York City
NOT JUST A LABEL, the largest global network of contemporary designers and a leading curator of fashion talent, is launching its first retail space in New York City, a temporary store at the Waldorf Astoria New York, slated to open December 4, 2015 through December 13, 2015. Part of the New York City Economic Development Corporation’s (NYCEDC) ‘Made in NY’ initiative, the NOT JUST A LABEL | Made in NY store will showcase a selection of NYC’s most notable emerging designers, supporting the growth of the local fashion, manufacturing and creative industries. Placed inside the Waldorf Astoria New York, a legendary destination in NYC with historic fashion ties, the store’s mission to highlight the city’s fashion industry adds to the cultural richness of the New York hospitality staple.
All products available at the NOT JUST A LABEL | Made in NY store are produced inside New York City’s five boroughs. With this project, backed by the New York City Mayor’s Office, NOT JUST A LABEL will utilize a global network of designers to support those with a stake in NYC, reinforcing a community that celebrates, supports and sustains entrepreneurship and innovation in fashion. After more than 250 designer nominations and 1,000 product submissions, NJAL selected 100 local brands and designers to showcase. Reflecting the diversity of styles from Greater New York, notable designers include Chromat, Bliss Lau and Study NY. During the ten-day opening, NOT JUST A LABEL | Made in NY will offer over 400 products for purchase, from men’s, women’s, jewelry and accessories brands.
“For decades, New York City has functioned at the center of the fashion universe as an iconic source of talent, creativity, and international influence, however it is often easy for emerging designers to be forgotten,” says NOT JUST A LABEL Founder and CEO, Stefan Siegel. “NOT JUST A LABEL | Made in NY gives even the youngest New York designers an opportunity to realize the dream of showcasing their collections to this incredibly influential city.”
The NOT JUST A LABEL | Made in NY store functions as more than a retail shop, igniting conversations around the shift from fast fashion to sustainability, and giving transparency to the creative and manufacturing industries in New York City. A destination to experience fashion and its impact, the project will include workshops led by industry leaders, educators, influencers and celebrity designers such as Parsons Dean Burak Cakmak, People’s Revolution founder Kelly Cutrone, Adam Selman, Chromat's Becca McCharan and Gabi Asfour, as well as notable members of Pratt and FIT. The public workshops will be hosted at the NOT JUST A LABEL | Made in NY space at 6:00pm each evening from December 7th to December 10th, with topics including the future vision of the ‘Made in NY’ initiative, production innovation, fashion education and New York’s industry development today. A full list of workshops has been included below. Building on these conversations, NOT JUST A LABEL will also offer “Fashion and Fantasy,” a curated selection of film shorts from the diverse array of New York City design talent, presenting an in-depth look into the historical influences and intricacies of New York City’s creative culture.
Well-positioned in the heart of Manhattan at the Waldorf Astoria New York, the store entrance will be located on the corner of Park Ave. and 50th St. Chosen due to the hotel’s prominence as an iconic NYC landmark, the Waldorf Astoria New York embraces a deep-seated historic association to the fashion industry as host for the original Coty American Fashion Critics’ Awards, frequent fashion galas by CFDA founder Eleanor Lambert, and some the city’s first fashion shows, including those by French houses Dior, Givenchy and Balmain.
“As a host to the world and destination for locals and visitors alike, some of society’s most creative and influential minds began their careers within the inspirational environment of the Waldorf Astoria New York,” says Michael Hoffman, Managing Director of the hotel. “We’re proud to continue this legacy with NOT JUST A LABEL | Made in NY, offering the city’s most notable young designers with a platform to showcase their talents to a truly global audience.”
The ‘Made in NY’ program, created for New York City’s fashion industry, was launched by the NYCEDC and Mayor’s office in early 2015 to acknowledge the economic importance and influence of this growing sector, shifting the focus to support early thriving companies and designers. The initiative serves as a new movement in fashion, bridging the gap between the industry and those who come to New York City in order to start their careers. As part of the Retail Activation Program, the NYCEDC developed an incubator and co-working space network, which has benefited more than 1,000 start-up businesses and 1,500 employees within the city. In conjunction, the NYCEDC and Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) have granted over $1.1 million to 13 production facilities throughout the city, helping retain and create new manufacturing jobs locally.
“Similar to our past efforts in destination cities around the world, the NOT JUST A LABEL | Made in NY project emphasizes New York City’s position as an industry leader where talent, creatives and innovative manufacturing challenge the value-chain in which we conceptualize fashion,” says Siegel. “The NYCEDC’s ‘Made in NY’ program reflects the ethos of NJAL’s core mission in nurturing young talent and independent designers.”
With extensive experience in the integration of local designers and manufacturers around the world, NJAL joins the New York City’s ‘Made in NY’ program after previous success with retail and educational activations such as a multi-disciplinary showcase during Berlin Fashion Week, the world’s largest retail concept in the Dubai Design District and a concept trade fair in Venice, where the Italian government tasked the NJAL team with reviving local luxury Italian manufacturing. Representing designers from over 110 countries, NJAL creates multi-dimensional platforms through collaborative partnerships, educational workshops and global events with fashion publications and institutions to feature emerging designers, supporting the future of the industry at its roots. NJAL clients have included Swarovski, Zara (Inditex), Project Runway USA, Ferrari, the Copenhagen Fashion Summit and the British Council, among many others.
Open from December 4-13th, from 11am-9pm, the NOT JUST A LABEL | Made in NY store is located at the Waldorf Astoria New York, 301 Park Avenue, on the corner of Park Ave. and 50th St. For more information on NJAL, please visit NOTJUSTALABEL.com
To find out more about The NJAL Forum, which will run alongside NJAL's retail activation at the Waldorf Astoria New York, please click here. The NJAL Forum will run from Dec 7th — Dec 10th, and will include conversations and panel discussions around all things Made in New York, as well as daily fashion film screenings from NJAL's global community of design talent.