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Where to Find the Fashion Week Designers Who Have Shunned Lincoln Center

By Serena Solomon | February 6, 2014 8:45am
 More than ever before big name designers are choosing independant and creative venues throughout the city.
New York Fashion Week Goes Around the City
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NEW YORK CITY — If you go looking for Michael Kors, Vera Wang and Diane Von Furstenberg this Fashion Week, don't bother going to Lincoln Center. 

These three are among the leading designers who announced in December that they were choosing more independent, creative spots for their shows, instead of the traditional runway shows at the IMG-run Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week tents in Lincoln Center. They're skipping the official New York Fashion Week events in Lincoln Center and opting for venues Downtown and in Brooklyn instead.

"It is all about the clothing. But increasingly it is [also] about the story, and their story of the brand could be a completely different environment," said Simon Collins, the dean of fashion at Parsons The New School for Design, explaining why some designers are shunning Lincoln Center.

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Designers are looking for venues that offer more creative freedom, as opposed to the bland but functional layouts in the Lincoln Center tents, he said. 

"You start to explore the urban nature of the city through these runways," he said.

During the Fall 2013 shows in February 2013, Proenza Schouler showed in a rundown 19th-century building. In September 2013, for the Spring 2014 shows, designer Siki Im created a runway in an underground parking lot in Chelsea, Collins said.

"Designers want to customize their creativity," said Lauren Indvik, the co-editor of Fashionista.com.

"[Lincoln Center] is pretty cookie-cutter and you can only do so much."

But Valerie Steele, the director of the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology, said Fashion Week swings between the need for a single convenient location for buyers and the need for designers to express their creativity.

"It is like a pendulum effect, every few years," she said.

Here are some of the designers looking beyond Lincoln Center for their shows:

Diane von Furstenberg in TriBeCa

Diane Von Furstenberg is one of the designers to shun the IMG-run Fashion Week for the first time this season, telling The New York Times she wanted "something special" for the 40th anniversary of her famous wrap dress. Her show will take place at Spring Studios on Varick Street near Canal Street, on Feb. 9 at 5 p.m.

Alexander Wang at the Navy Yards, Brooklyn

Alexander Wang, who has always used venues that were off-the-beaten-track, will be hosting his show at the Duggal Greenhouse in the Navy Yards, on Feb. 8 at 8:30 p.m., giving Brooklyn a major Fashion Week show. He told Women's Wear Daily it was an "incredible space" that "corresponds very well to this season’s creative concept."

Vera Wang in Chelsea

Vera Wang will not be showing at Lincoln Center. Instead, she is heading to the Dia Center for the Arts on West 22nd Street, between Tenth and Eleventh avenues, according to Women's Wear Daily.

Michael Kors in TriBeCa

Michael Kors will be joining von Furstenberg in the move from Lincoln Center to Spring Studios. His runway show will be on Feb. 12 at 10 a.m, according to Women's Wear Daily.  

The Hub in Hell's Kitchen

The IMG-run Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week is hosting its own offsite venue for young talent and emerging designers. It touted the venue within the Hudson Hotel on West 58th Street as a more creative option with "flexible large-scale space" and an "urban and downtown charm," according to a statement from IMG.