It's a been a long time coming -- a fashion week in New York City devoted to all-things menswear.
But this week the vision of New York Fashion Week: Men's gets under way. In advance of the four-day fashion affair, Stylebook caught up with Steven Kolb, CEO of the Council of Fashion Designers of America, which is overseeing Manhattan's inaugural men's fashion week.
Why now to hold the inaugural New York Fashion Week: Men's?
This is a perfect time to launch New York Fashion Week: Men's. American menswear has never been stronger or more creative. The design talent is diverse from tailored to street to swim, which allows for a strong and compelling fashion showcase.
What has the response been like from the industry?
The response from the entire industry has been overwhelmingly enthusiastic. From early on, we have had invaluable support across the board, including major menswear designers, executives from top retailers and editors from key men's magazines.
About how many designers are participating? And what did the application process entail?
Over 40 designers will participate in the inaugural season of NYFW: Men's. The open application process began at the end of May. It allowed us to curate a broad spectrum of designers, including established to emerging talent.
What was the thinking behind the location for New York Fashion Week: Men's?
We wanted a location that was quintessentially New York. As a former terminal for the High Line, Skylight Clarkson Sq. embodied the spirit of New York and New York Fashion Week: Men's.
What's the hope or vision for New York Fashion Week: Men's moving forward? Is there a desire to make it an annual or bi-annual event?
New York Fashion Week: Men's will take place twice a year, with the fall 2016 shows scheduled for January 28-31. We hope that as we shine more spotlight on American menswear talent, the sector will grow accordingly and so will NYFW: Men's.
Photo: Steven Kolb, right, with fashion designer John Varvatos, who will close the inaugural New York Fashion Week: Men's on Thursday night. Courtesy of John Varvatos