Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week is in full swing! But on September 12, the focus turned to sustainable wear as the CDFA and Lexus announced the winners of its second annual Eco-Fashion Challenge at Milk Gallery in the Meatpacking District.



Libertine designer Johnson Hartig, whose collections focus on graphics, deconstructed classics and recycled clothing, happily accepted a $25,000 award while his pre-recorded acceptance video aired on a projector over the crowd.



Not more than two weeks after designer John Bartlett closed his West Village boutique to focus on his animal rescue nonprofit (named after his own rescue pup, Tiny Tim) did the animal-loving designer pose for a crowd of onlookers while being presented with a $25,000 check from CFDA CEO, Steven Kolb.



The final winner, designer Marcia Patmos, showed her reversible separates and modern knits this week during a runway show at The Standard Hotel. Patmos’ collection was made locally using homegrown yarns and zero-waste techniques. The designer also received a $25,000 award for her eco-friendly collection.



The winning designers posed with CDFA judges and Lexus Events and Partnerships Manager, Adrian Si.



Guests enjoyed an open bar of specialty cocktails and light appetizers, and Lexus debuted its upcoming GS Hybrid.  A collage displaying each of the designers’ collection inspiration hung on the walls at Milk Studios.



The CFDA / Lexus Eco-Fashion Challenge supports CFDA members who demonstrate a commitment to promoting ecologically responsible lifestyles and sustainable design. To be considered for the challenge, designers were asked to submit a proposal for their 2012 clothing and accessory lines that used 25% eco-friendly materials and practices.

– Tracey Lewis