Fashion Los Angeles postpones debut fashion week event until 2012
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Fashion Los Angeles, a group that has spent the last two years planning an event organizers hoped would revive Los Angeles Fashion Week and give the city’s fashion designers national exposure, has decided to postpone its inaugural event -- which had been set for Feb. 1-7 --for another year.
‘We’re postponing until 2012 to work on building up sponsorship and fashion-presentation-ready designers,’ said Fashion Los Angeles co-founder and Chief Executive Michael Venedicto.
Venedicto said the group had hoped to raise $1.5 million in sponsorship pledges for an event to be held in tents on the roof of the parking structure across from Walt Disney Concert Hall at 1st Street and Grand Avenue, but had not reached that goal.
He declined to say how much of the needed funding had been raised to date, only that to move ahead
with a scaled-back event ‘would not make the difference to the city [of Los Angeles] and the designers that rightfully need a big change.’ Venedicto also said that the unexpected mid-November departure of co-founder Jeff Warrington, his business partner in the long-percolating venture, affected his decision.
‘When I took on his responsibilities as well as my own, running the office and trying to secure sponsorships, I started to think: ‘You know, this is going to get sloppy,’ and I’m really trying to create a community project that has years of repercussions and benefits. I’m not just in this for the money.’
Venedicto said he wasn’t able to discuss specifics of the split for legal reasons, but said he intended to forge ahead with his plans to revitalize Los Angeles fashion week and provide a year-round showcase for its designers.
To that end, Venedicto says he recently signed a licensing deal with the Recording Academy that has Fashion Los Angeles working with the upcoming Grammy Awards. ‘I’ll be handling the Grammy style studio Feb. 9-12 and the red carpet on the 13th trying to place as many amazing brands as possible in front of the global press and stylists -- to make up for my non-Fashion Los Angeles event.’
After the Grammy Awards, Venedicto said the group’s monthly programming, which includes curated pop-up shops and meet-ups of fashion bloggers, will resume, with an eye toward 2012. ‘Hopefully, we’ll be launching at 1st and Grand [streets] that February,’ Venedicto said. ‘Around the same dates.’
The Fashion Los Angeles decision leaves just one organized group of runway shows on the local catwalk calendar, Los Angeles Fashion Week at Sunset Gower Studios, which is slated to showcase fall and winter 2011 collections March 13-19.
-- Adam Tschorn