Couture Musings

CFDA’s Jewelry Showcase

Last week, part of the Couture team was lucky enough to attend a jewelry showcase of the CFDA here in New York City. Several Couture designers were on display alongside a venerable group of their peers at the celebratory cocktail reception, media and retailer preview. For those who aren’t familiar with the organization, CFDA stands for Council of Fashion Designers of America. It’s a non-profit trade organization for North American designers of fashion and fashion accessories. The 400-person membership includes leading fashion, jewelry and accessory designers and is by-invitation only. In short, you’ve got to be pretty darn accomplished and talented to become a member of CFDA! Couture designers included Kara Ross, Lagos, Lisa Jenks and Mimi So (we’ll list all exhibiting designers below).

The jewelry showcase, which took place in the CFDA office in Soho, was the first of its kind. According to Steven Kolb, the organizations’ CEO, “This platform for jewelry designers gives credence to the important influence jewelry has on fashion and respects the creativity of our designers.” Having been there in person, we couldn’t agree more!

The showcase was the brainchild of talented designer and CFDA member Simon Alcantara, and jewelry consultant and former Senior Jewelry Editor of W Magazine, Talya Cousins. There was obviously an extremely impressive display of jewelry on hand, but before we even got to that part, what struck us most was the feeling of camaraderie in the air! It felt like we’d just stepped in to a family reunion, and like all good reunions, laughter and hugs were in abundance.

Of course, I’m always happy to see our Couture designers, but I was excited that I also got to see some designers who don’t exhibit at any show but who I’ve been friends with for years. To see how their collections, and in one case their mustache, had advanced since I’d last seen them was a real treat! Everyone we spoke to said the day-long event had been a huge success in terms of editor and retailer attendance, and across the board they all talked about how great it was to be in a room of other designers, sharing ideas, war stories, inside information and designing tips. In a big way, it reminded me of Couture and how I’ve always believed that one of the most special parts about our event is that each of the designers truly feel that they’re exhibiting among a group of their peers. It’s a constant reminder of why I love this industry so much!

Kudos to Simon and Talya and their PR maven Blair Brindley on a job extremely well done! And congratulations to all of the designers who participated! We can’t wait for the next CFDA jewelry fete.

Complete list of the 19 exhibiting designers is:

Angela Cummings

Danielle and Jodie Snyder- Dannijo

Dean Harris

Gerard Yosca

Kara Ross

Steven Lagos

Lisa Jenks

Loree Rodkin

Lisa Salzer- Lulu Frost

Michael Spirito

Mimi So

Mish Tworkowski- Mish

Nak Armstrong

Nicholas Varney- Nicholas Varney Jewels

Simon Alcantara

Stephen Dweck

Rachel Dooley -Gemma Redux

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Michelle Orman

Michelle Orman

Michelle Orman is the president of Last Word Communications, which spearheads the public relations for the COUTURE show. A 15+ year veteran of the COUTURE community, Michelle is obsessed with all things jewelry and watch related! To be included in COUTURE Musings, email Michelle at

Previously from Michelle Orman:

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