Beautiful people: Jewish designers strike a pose at New York Fashion Week

Jewish Designers
Alice and Oliva via Instagram

The glorious month of September is upon us, complete with pumpkin spice lattes, cooler evening temperatures, and of course New York Fashion Week. The weeklong fashion event, which kicked off September 5th, 2018, showcased designers premiering their Spring/Summer 2019 collections.  

Fashion has always had deep-seated Jewish roots and while many shoppers are familiar with household names like Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, and Marc Jacobs, this year’s NYFW featured a fabulous Jewess-designer lineup that any fashionista would gladly give up her Chanel bag to attend.

Check out these four big names in fashion, and one newcomer:

If you had no idea this “IT” designer was Jewish, you’re not alone! Born to a Jewish mother (Reva Schapira), Tory Burch started her now-famous fashion label in 2004 and was named the 73rd most powerful woman by Forbes in 2015. As of 2018, there are currently 250 Tory Burch stores worldwide; 3000 retailers around the world also carry the label.  

Tory Burch showed on September 7th at 10 am.

Rebecca Minkoff made her fashion debut in 2004 with her “Morning After” purse. The classic bag bolstered her career in the fashion industry and inspired her street chic designs in 2009. Her brother, Uri Minkoff co-founded the company and now serves as CEO.

As an aside, in 2013, Minkoff found herself in hot water with her loyal Jewish fans when rumors circulated that she refused to cancel her NYFW show on Friday, September 6th since it coincided with Rosh Hashanah and reportedly wouldn’t allow her Jewish employees to take the day off.

Rebecca Minkoff showed September 7th at 10 am.

I have been personally obsessed with not only the DVF brand, but Diane herself since the early 2000’s. This fashion icon and fearless female has been showcasing her iconic wrap dresses since 1974.

Born to a Greek Holocaust survivor, Liliane Nahmias, and a Moldovian Father, Lipa Halfin, Von Furstenberg constantly credits her mother for her life mantra “fear is not an option.” 

Her line is sold globally and boasts more than 45 freestanding boutiques worldwide. Von Furstenberg also serves as President of the Council of Fashion Designers of America.

DVF showed on September 9th in the morning, by appointment only.

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know I’m a huge fan of this eclectic designer and mother of three young girls. Having launched her iconic brand in 2002, Alice & Olivia has experienced an insane trajectory and is sold in over 800 stores worldwide.

Bendet does philanthropic work with Friends of the IDF, often contributing a portion of Alice and Olivia’s sales to the organization.

Alice and Olivia by Stacey Bendet showed on September 11th from 3-5pm.

A post shared by Batsheva (@batshevadress) on

Batsheva Hay was born to Kibbutznik secular parents. Today, while she is a Shomer Shabbat, Kosher-keeping fashionista, she is ANYTHING but Orthodox. With an undergraduate degree from Stanford, a Master’s in Psychology, and a Law Degree from Georgetown, Batsheva is married to heavyweight fashion photographer Alexie Hay and is one of the most anticipated designers to show this year.

Her pieces are often described as Laura Ashley meets Little House on the Prairie at an orgy. A CDFA/Vogue Finalist in 2018, Hay designs and produces four collections a year from her Queens studio.

Batsheva showed on September 12th from 4-6pm.

If you were lucky enough to receive an invite to one of these shows, enjoy! And if not, you were not alone fangirling from afar; nearly every designer is now streams their shows and presentations on Instagram and Facebook.

What started as a fun distraction grew to be a passion project for Liora Rez; but her career did not start in the social media industry. After a decade of working in structured finance, her life changed as she became a stay at home mom; Liora was unable to just sit still and needed a connection to the outside world. Her hobby has grown today to one of the largest Jewish social media accounts and features her passions of fashion, her unapologetic support of Israel, her relationship with Judaism, and her amazing family. Liora uses her continuously growing platform to collaborate with brands and organizations from both the Jewish and Fashion worlds. Her social media pages leads by example that you never have to be just one type of person, and showcasing all of your passions together can create a unique story.