Fashion Group International’s Rising Star Awards held its 2023 pre-party at the newly opened Sartoria Studios boutique in New York on Tuesday night. The occasion featured a cocktail party ahead of the annual event on May 8 with insiders such as Katya Tolstova, Laura Eurdolian and Nolan Meader mingling with nominees, including Bach Mai, Marisa Wilson and Teddy von Ranson.
Led by FGI’s CEO Maryanne Grisz, the Awards continue FGI’s 90-year mission to foster community for designers across a wide range of categories, including accessories, eveningwear and jewelry.
“All of the new designers this year speak to the level of creativity and original vision that is taking place in our industry right now,” Grisz exclusively shared with FN. “It is very important for designers to have a community, a place where they can share resources and lean on one another when important questions and crossroads happen in their careers.”
Within the competitive field of fashion, FGI’s 2023 nominees are looking at topics like diversity, community and awareness when building out their brands, including shoe label Oncept co-founders Megan Key Campos and Nick Lucio. Campos is particularly focusing on individuality as a new label in the fashion landscape, following her and Lucio’s former executive roles at Dolce Vita.
“I think there’s always something a little different. Just a little off, a little different, that makes you stand out among the rest,” Campos says. “People want newness; there’s a lot of saturation in the market, and I think people really want newness and to be different.”
Aside from individuality, community is particularly important to this year’s finalists. Chris Donovan, who launched his namesake shoe brand in 2019 is a first-time nominee. Donovan told FN that the support of FGI and his fellow designers has been especially eye-opening while preparing for the future.
“There is room for everybody,” he said. “You have this great group of people you can always turn to, [and] you hope all your friends, all these people are doing great just like you are. When I first entered fashion, I was told it’s really cutthroat and all this stuff. I haven’t found that. I’ve found more support. Everybody I run into wants me to succeed; that’s an eye-opener.”
PHOTOS: Discover red carpet arrivals at FGI’s 2022 Night of Stars in the gallery.