This year, the Fashion Fund will return to its original format, which awarded a competition winner and two runners-up a monetary prize as well as business mentorships and a pathway to success.
In 2021, in light of the challenges the American fashion industry was facing, the Fashion Fund started granting funds and mentorship to all 10 finalists.
Steven Kolb, chief executive officer of the CFDA, added, “We are witnessing a generational shift in American fashion with an exciting group of young designers who, through their work, powerfully address the time and culture we live in. As CFDA and Vogue embark on the 19th edition of the Fashion Fund, we look forward to further shape the future and continued success of the fashion industry.”
“This February’s shows in New York were a testament to the fabulous creativity, spirit and ingenuity of a new generation of American designers, and I can’t wait to meet the talents who will be our Fashion Fund class of 2023,” said Anna Wintour, chief content officer, Condé Nast, and global editorial director, Vogue.
The CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund was established after 9/11 to help emerging designers and cultivate the next generation of American fashion talent. Since it began, 180 designers have received mentoring and more than $7.7 million in funding.
Designers eligible to apply must be in business for a minimum of two years. Their primary business must be based in the U.S., should have no more than 30 full-time employees, and not exceed a total revenue of $10 million per year.
The 2023 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund is supported by Afterpay, Instagram, Nordstrom, Saks Fifth Avenue and Vogue.
In addition to Wintour and Kolb, the members of the selection committee are Mark Holgate, Vogue; Chioma Nnadi, Vogue; Aurora James, Brother Vellies/Fifteen Percent Pledge; Roopal Patel, Saks Fifth Avenue; Eva Chen, Instagram; Sam Lobban, Nordstrom; Paloma Elsesser, model and activist; Nick Molnar, Afterpay and The Next Generation, and Thom Browne, Thom Browne New York and chairman of the CFDA.
Last year’s finalists were: Jacques Agbobly, Black Boy Knits; Elena Velez; Felisha Noel, Fe Noel; Lauren Harwell Godfrey, Harwell Godfrey; Taofeek Abijako, Head of State; Conley Averett, Judy Turner; Colm Dillane, KidSuper; Pia Davis and Autumn Randolph, No Sesso; Omar Salam, Sukeina, and Jackson Wiederhoeft, Wiederhoeft.