Jonathan Simkhai is an emerging star of the New York fashion world. He's been profiled by the New York Times, noticed by high-fashion magazines like Elle, and, of course, been written about by Fox News.
Simkhai is graduating from the CFDA Fashion Incubator Program at the end of this month. CFDA is the trade organization for the fashion industry, and the incubator program was launched in 2010 to nurture budding talent. Designers get reduced rent, mentoring and networking help from industry leaders.
Simkhai said, "CFDA offered a variety of services and opportunities that were so valuable to me as a growing designer." He said after the 31st, he moves out of the incubator space, and "I am on my own to navigate the fashion world. I take the tools I've learned in the program and apply them to growing my business."
The New York born and raised designer showed his fall 2014 collection during New York Fashion Week last month.
When I asked him about the clothes this season, Simkhai said it all started at "a flea market - I saw this really beautiful crocodile covered cigar box. I got this whole vision in my head of a mens' study, a very powerful person. I wanted to give women that power.. that masculine edge."
The clothes don't come across as especially masculine, but Simkhai said it's reflected in some of the other choices, "I used a lot of the typical elements of a men's study; a lot of leathers and browns." But he also said he added his own special sauce, "keeping it really Simkhai and sporty."
Simkhai is definitely one to watch.