The fashion world
showed it's big enough for its elder statesmen and its
rising stars Monday night as Oscar de la Renta shared the
coveted womenswear award with Proenza Schouler
designers Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez at the
annual awards for the Council of Fashion Designers of
The tie was a
surprise, especially to ceremony host Ellen Barkin, who
first read only De la Renta's name and then realized there
were more designers on the card. She made light of the
error, continuing her running joke of the evening that
at 53 she was one of the few people in the room old
enough to appreciate fashion when the CFDA began handing out
awards 25 years ago.
De la Renta said
the winners shared the award with fellow nominee Marc
''There are no
losers, there are only winners,'' he said.
As McCollough and
Hernandez took their turn at the podium, one of their
cell phones rang. Hernandez correctly predicted it was his
mother but didn't take the call. He credited the
support of the duo's peers with helping them rise so
high just five years after they graduated from Parsons
School of Design.
Other big winners
were Ralph Lauren for menswear and Derek Lam for
accessory design, and up-and-comers Phillip Lim, David
Neville, and Marcus Wainwright for Rag & Bone, and
Jessie Randall for Loeffler Randall. The competitive
awards were chosen by CFDA members, editors, stylists,
the first-ever American Fashion Legend Award. A montage
of his 40-year career was introduced by Oprah Winfrey, who
gushed about the wrap-style gown Lauren made for her.
Lauren's place in fashion was undeniable.
''When you hear
'It's so Ralph Lauren,' it's very understood. The name
evokes an image...a lifestyle we all wish we could live.''
She added: ''He's
admired, imitated, but never equaled.''
received a lifetime achievement award in 1991, advised
emerging designers: ''Stick to your guns and enjoy what
you're doing.... American fashion is just starting.''
of honorary awards chosen by the CFDA board of directors
included jewelry designer Robert Lee Morris for lifetime
achievement, Washington Post fashion critic Robin
Givhan, French designer Pierre Cardin, and Bono and
his wife, Ali Hewson, as a special tribute to their
''These are two
people that remind us that 'conscious' is always in
fashion,'' said actor Djimon Hounsou.
Bono and Hewson
didn't attend the ceremony but relayed via video their
thanks to the industry for championing their mission to
create a company as a conduit from the fashion world
to the Third World. The couple, along with designer
Rogan Gregory, started the collection Edun two years ago.
Even without the
U2 front man, there were plenty of celebrity guests at
the dinner, held at the New York Public Library.
brought three dates: Debra Messing, in a purple jersey
halter gown with a plunging V neck; Heidi Klum, in a brown
gathered gown covered in Swarovski crystals; and model
Liya Kebede, in a cheetah-pattern beaded minidress.
Kors's staff had
selected a few options for Messing to wear, she said,
but she knew the purple one was right as soon as she saw it.
''I made a beeline for that one.''
''She didn't know
it was the one I wanted,'' Kors added. ''It was a
by her husband, David Bowie, and wearing a slinky red
Donna Karan gown and an oversized necklace by Morris, said
she's still a fan of fashion more than three decades
into her modeling career.
not to love? You're always playing dress-up.'' she said.
Mendes wore a hot-pink gown as she walked the red carpet
with Calvin Klein designer Francisco Costa. Uma
Thurman, who presented an award to photographer
Patrick Demarchelier, wore a slate-blue halter gown
with a tight ruched bodice and flowing skirt. Barkin wore a
sparkly silver scoop-neck cocktail dress by L'Wren
Furstenberg, marking her first CFDA awards as the group's
president, said the celebration of fashion sends the message
that designers help each other.
stronger than we are individually,'' she said. ''It's
about the big one giving to the small one, and Ralph is the