SCHMOOZING: AAFA AMERICAN IMAGE AWARDS RAISES FUNDS FOR MERCY SHIPS

by Karen Alberg Grossman
AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016
The American Apparel & Footwear Association hosted a fabulous dinner last night on Park Avenue to celebrate the winners of the 2016 American Image Awards.

Our industry’s own Joseph Abboud, chief creative director of Tailored Brands, was recognized as Person of the Year and the inimitable Iris Apfel was honored as Fashion Maverick. Other honorees were Christian Siriano (designer of the year), BBC International (company of the year) and Shinola Detroit (retailer of the year). The evening was hosted quite graciously by fashion writer Hal Rubenstein.

In her acceptance speech, Iris Apfel noted that the value of fashion is that it brings joy to our lives. She spoke about the University of Texas students she mentors every year (this year’s class attended the event!) and her advice to them: if you don’t have passion for what you’re doing, look for something else.

AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016AAFA American Image Awards 2016
“I was never aware that I was a fashion maverick,” she confided. “I just always did what I wanted. I tried to be myself and do only what made me happy (without embarrassing my husband) so to be recognized for this is quite an honor. Among the things I never thought I’d be: a fashion icon, a cover girl, a geriatric starlet. Yet I’ve become all three, and I am grateful. (But most grateful for the donation to Mercy Ships made in my honor.”)

Tailored Brands CEO Doug Ewert presented the award to Joseph Abboud, describing him as tenacious, loyal and a risk taker driven by deep passion. Abboud spoke about the new world-class stature of American fashion (“fresh, eclectic, creativity combined with intelligence”) and about the true meaning of style. “Nothing is more stylish, or more American in spirit, than giving to a higher cause. I’m very proud to support the incredible work that Mercy Ships has been doing since 1978. Their commitment to those in need, to so many people who can’t help themselves, is what America is really all about.”