A Complete Guide to New York Fashion Week

Kendall Jenner walks the runway for the Proenza Schouler fashion show during September 2022 New York Fashion Week

Jason Mendez/Getty Images for NYFW: The Shows

New York Fashion Week (often abbreviated NYFW) takes place twice a year—once in February and once in September—and kicks off what's become known as Fashion Month, during which designers showcase their collections for the upcoming season.

New York Fashion Week will begin on Thursday, February 8, and end on Wednesday, February 14, and is expected to be jam-packed with runway shows, presentations, lectures, and even digital events centering around the upcoming trends for fall and winter 2024. A major shift this season is that the storied Spring Studios is no longer the official hub of New York Fashion Week: The Shows. After more than five years, many brands will showcase their collections at the Starrett-Lehigh Building, a 19-story building in Chelsea. The decision was made by the IMG, the producer of NYFW: The Shows, and has been met with division amongst the fashion crowd.

NYFW is highly anticipated by fashion lovers and the industry alike, as it’s every designer’s time to share their vision. Although fashion is always changing and evolving, it's also cyclical; you never know what’s going to come into style and what will return. In New York and the cities that follow (London, Milan, and Paris, consecutively) the runways unveil it all.

 Emily Ratajkowski walks the runway wearing Tory Burch during Fall/Winter 2023 New York Fashion Week

Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images for Tory Burch

Where Is NYFW?

NYFW has been held in a few locations over the years. It was first established by the fashion industry’s first-ever publicist, Eleanor Lambert back in 1943 to give American designers exposure during World War II. She called it “Press Week,” and designers gave presentations exclusively to the press and buyers at the Plaza Hotel.

Press Week gained traction quickly, and the success inspired designers to take their presentations beyond The Plaza. Choosing their setting became artistically strategic. In addition to department stores and showrooms, nightclubs, lofts, and galleries were often booked, according to Vogue UK.

Cut to 1993, and NYFW would take place in Bryant Park to centralize the shows (a luxury for attendees who had been running around the city to view one presentation after another). The venue was dubbed “Seventh on Sixth”—a reference to the fashion district moving east one avenue—and tents were stationed around midtown Manhattan for designers to show their collections. It was a significant move, attracting corporate sponsorships and leading to the event’s rebranding to Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in 2007.

Savannah Guthrie, Mindy Kaling, Kate Hudson, Katie Holmes and Alan Cumming sit front row at the Michael Kors Collection Fall/Winter 2023 Runway Show

Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Michael Kors

Who Attends NYFW?

Originally, invitations were only sent to fashion editors and writers, along with fashion buyers. Now, stylists, influencers, and celebrities are also at the top of the invite list. However, that isn’t to say fashion lovers outside the fashion industry can’t partake in some festivities. Some brands stream their runway shows live, and clips of presentations are bound to circulate on social media, whether on the brand’s channels or those of attendees.

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