It is no mystery that New York is our nation's fashion capital. Granted, Los Angeles, Miami and D.C. are also booming fashion locales, New York, without contention, is reigning leader for the United States. While reading my "guide" given to me at Fashion Week 2012, I came across a letter issued by Mayor Bloomberg. The letter mentioned how grateful he was in welcoming the event this year and its constituents from all over the world. He states, "these designers and entreprenuers are increasingly staying here, starting their own businesses, and creating more jobs for New Yorkers. As a result, fashion already employs 173,000 people and generates $10 billion in wages in our city."
Though not a New Yorker, I felt proud in that moment to be a small part of the industry and honored to be present. The influence fashion has had over the years in our country alone, not to mention the world, is more immense and profound than most would assume. It occupied a large portion of our economy during World War II, employing women across the nation while their husbands, fathers, brothers and sons were off at war. The creation of manufactured fabric due to the shortage of cotton and wool during the war, gave way to the fabrics our troops and athletes use today!
Within recent decades, the decline of American manufacturers of clothing has significantly damaged the economy. With the production and manufacturing of clothing being sent overseas, much like any over seas outsourcing, Americans now pay less for less quality and jobs are scarce in those industries locally. Companies, such as American Apparel and North Face, are making an effort to keep manufacturing in states and encourage other companies and designers to do the same. Nanette Lepore makes 85% of her garments in New York. Rag & Bone, the Olsen's The Row and Nichole Miller are predominately made in America as well.
Mayor Bloomberg is right to address the influence the fashion industry has on his city, as well as the nation, based on the success of New York's economy alone. The next move would be to get the rest of America on the same track and soon we can all enjoy an international Fashion Week in your local city!