“CFW provides a unique platform for emerging designers from the east coast and I am especially fond of showcases that foster new talent and give aspiring designers an opportunity to present their collections and ideas in a professional runway situation. Charleston Fashion Week is a great galvanizing event for the entire community.”

- Fern Mallis, creator of New York Fashion Week, and host of 92Y Fashion Icons with Fern Mallis series.



The mission of the Emerging Designer Competition is to offer a platform for aspiring clothing designers living in the United States to showcase their talent on the runway at Charleston Fashion Week® (CFW).  EDC seeks and supports a community of up-and-coming and undiscovered fashion designers*, and believes in the value of spotlighting a new generation of innovative designers in multiple genres of fashion and gain the attention of national press and buyers.

*Please note, accessory designers do not qualify.


The Top Designers chosen by the CFW Fashion Panel of judges as semifinaists will show a Fall/Winter 2017 collections on the nights of Tuesday, March 14 through Friday, March 17, 2017. A select number of semifinalists will show each night at Charleston Fashion Week®, where one (1) designer from each evening will then be selected by the Fashion Panel of judges as a finalist to advance to Saturday evening, and have the chance to be named the Grand Prize Winner. The final runway show schedule will be announced by Charleston Fashion Week® at a later date.

Designers must present collections for Fall/Winter 2017 or Swimwear/Resort 2018 and include twelve (12) complete looks in total. Semifinalists will be first show eight (8) complete looks the night of their runway presentations (the nights of Tuesday, March 14 – Friday, March 17). Each finalist will show their entire collection (the original 8 plus an additional 4 complete looks) on Saturday, March 18, 2017.


Each evening during Charleston Fashion Week®, Tuesday, March 14 through Saturday, March 18, 2017, event attendees will have a chance to vote for their favorite Emerging Designer semifinalist shown on the runway. The People’s Choice winner will be announced at the end of each evening and will receive a $250 cash prize.

NEW! Belk Southern Designers Showcase Prize

One CFW 2017 Emerging Designer Semifinalist to be named as a winner in the Belk Southern Designer Showcase. Winner's merchandise will be carried in select Belk stores and on Belk.com in Spring 2018. Winner will travel to Belk corporate headquarters for presentation day and subsequent meetings with buyer(s). All travel expenses included, plus a $2,500 cash prize.



The 2017 Emerging Designer Competition Grand Prize Winner will receive the following prize package valued at over $40,000*:

  • Private lunch with Fern Mallis, creator of New York Fashion Week
  • Internship with a designer during New York Fashion Week in Fall 2017
  • Display of collection at In Support Of retail store in New York City with corresponding party
  • Mentoring opportunity with fashion industry leaders week of CFW
  • $10,000 cash prize
  • $10,000 online marketing and promotional package from F22 Designs
  • Complimentary runway show at Charleston Fashion Week® 2018


The 2017 Emerging Designer Competition People’s Choice Winners will receive the following:

  • $250 cash prize for one Emerging Designer each evening during Charleston Fashion Week®, Tuesday, March 14 – Saturday, March 18, 2017.

*Charleston Fashion Week®, its parent company, and all affiliates are not liable for any prizes not delivered as agreed by third party vendors.