Gilt Groupe Sparkles

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Published July 20, 2010

What do you get with your CFDA nomination? On top of a whole lot of attention, the nominees in menswer, womenswear, and accessory design got a chance to wade through Swarovski’s chocolate factory (better known as the Swarovski Creative Service Center). Eight designers–including Alexander Wang, Joseph Altuzarra, and Dana Lorenz– created crystal embellished pieces, giving their collections what Nadja Swarovski calls the “sparkling ingredient.” The crystal innovations were, across the board, interventions into the austere looks the designers otherwise prepared for the competition. Wang’s sleek black leather handbag now comes with a crystal-studded bottom; Altuzarra’s black women’s suit with crystal covered arms. Richard Chai’s look was light: a short-sleeved, avant-garde summer suit for men.

The looks go on sale at noon on July 21, exclusively on Gilt.com. The collaboration between the luxury online retailer Gilt Groupe and the CDFA foundation—the non-profit organization that nurtures  young national talent, was for Swarovski, “the perfect marriage.” All proceeds from the one-time sale will support CDFA. “At the end of the day,” Swarovski said, the event is “really about the designers.” It’s also about (be)dazzling customers.