Fashion Law Symposium — The Final Segment


So I have already written 2 previous posts on Fordham Law School’s annual Fashion Law Symposium, thru the Fashion Law Institute. Time has passed since the symposium, but the topical discussions were still worthy of a Fashion Nexus write-up! In addition, I have yet to share the major fun, non-topical portion of the event, a special fashion show by technological fashion brand CuteCircuit. So throughout this post are various images from this exciting runway presentation!!

But back to the panels, there was Power Dressing: Politics, Dress Codes, and the Public Eye.

Panelists were —


I was not present at this discussion, but it was all about looking at public figures, and one’s appearance being scrutinized and criticized. Fashion is a means of communication, so many who are in the public eye, politicians, celebs, executives, and the like use their clothing to establish an image and/or convey a message. Media coverage has also been ever-increasing in this area, and has become quite controversial, inspiring campaigns such as #AskHerMore and backlash over gender-specific dress codes. So how does commentary about clothing affect the wearer, and should this type of commentary be off limits? What constitutes power dressing in an era when hemlines no longer rise and fall by fiat? And when organizations contemplate dress codes, how can they stay on the right side of both public opinion and the law?


Next up, The Power of 2: Licensing and Wearable Technology. The panelist were —

In light of the wearable technology fashion show we would all later experience, this topic of discussion was spot on. Fashion and technology is on the rise. It’s a fast growing sector, from luxury consumer shopping at Ralph Lauren with the Lauren Ricky Bag with light or to Apple’s rose gold watch. But wearable tech is not the product of one industry, it’s two.


A previous panel discussion from another year discussed patents and data privacy in the context of wearable. So with this discussion, the focus was shifted to how best to bring together these two industries, the different legal cultures, especially in the area of IP protection. Plans were discussed on how brands could source out for this tech work, such as with license agreements. There was also talks then again to budgets and how to allocate for IP protection. This area is still emerging so I am sure it will be a topic at fashion law panels to come.


All in all, I had a great time covering the Fashion Law Symposium and it was amazing now share these fashion law areas with all of my readers. In light of Fordham Law’s recent news with now having fashion law be an academic degree, thanks in part to the CFDA, these continued discussions on Fashion Law, and the many aspects it entails is highly important in the fashion industry. I look forward to continuing my research and discussion in this growing field!



Fashion Law Institute’s Unique MBFW Show — Role Models, Not Runway Models!

The nonprofit Fashion Law Institute is the world’s first academic center dedicated to the law and business of fashion. It was founded by Prof. Susan Scafidi with the support of the Council of Fashion Designers of America and its president, Diane von Furstenberg. FLI is based at Fordham Law School. So of course taking part in the realm of fashion, the Institute too takes part with NYFW/MBFW!


After changing the landscape of the Mercedes Benz Fashion Week runways with last year’s celebrated plus-size fashion show, the Fashion Law Institute once again demonstrated the power of fashion to make a difference in women’s lives with their show featuring designer Carrie Hammer. (pictured below, Carrie & Susan Scafidi — chic date night look for the woman on the go & a fitted red cocktail dress, perfect for the workplace to a cocktail hour)


Carrie’s collection consists of a wide range of styles — business, business casual, dressy casual, outerwear, and more. Walking the runway in the show were role models from throughout the business and nonprofit worlds —








Designer Carrie Hammer is an alumna of FLI’s Fashion Law Bootcamp, a program in which everyone from designers to attorneys learns how fashion law can help a fashion business. Carrie is one of the many fashion professionals helping the Fashion Law Institute prove that fashion law isn’t just for lawyers!

454682394_jpg_304_0_1647_28358209_3000 modern grey skirt suit

Hammer began her label to provide more options of fashionable apparel for professional women. She launched her brand in 2012. She and her line have been featured on CNBC, Fox Business News, Forbes, GMA, Elle, Marie Claire, & Cosmo, just to name a few.

The complete runway show video is on Vimeo. — image below, black suit, leather detailing, great modern twist & take!


The complete list of role models & images are available on Scribd.


Navy blue skirt suit, lace detailing, LOVE!!

This Thing Called Fashion Law….

images1I am in law school so of course I am asked all the time, “What type of law do you want to practice?” When I first moved to NY, I said entertainment law. But I often explained it as a multidisciplinary practice or a variety of different types of law that encompass it. I now say I want to work in fashion and with fashion law. I get the same puzzled looks and further line of questioning — “What is Fashion Law?”

I still explain the multidisciplinary concept. Fashion law encompasses contracts, corporations and intellectual property (copyright, trademark, design patents, etc.). I also quickly mention the field is still evolving. The east coast, right here in NYC, already started to help develop this field and the study of it. But the west coast has also found its niche as well. I think with this trend of fashion law programs at law schools, the field will develop a clearer vision and maybe, just maybe, the confusion will start to clear up.

Fashion-Law-Event-Jornada-Derecho-y-Moda-Museo-del-TrajeFordham University School of Law launched the Fashion Law Institute, several years back and is the world’s first center dedicated to law and the business of fashion. The Institute offers training for the fashion lawyers and designers of the future, provides legal services for design students and professionals, and makes available information and assistance on issues facing the fashion industry. This program was founded by fashion law pioneer Susan Scafidi; she literally created the first fashion law course!

logo-sprite400_500_3pxMost law schools are still in the earliest of stages when it comes to fashion law and that is just offering the course — Fashion Law. But when you are at a school that offers half a dozen fashion law-related courses, it makes the study, the practicality and really the field much more clearer; you can better understand and grasp what fashion law is. The courses offered are — Fashion Law; Fashion Law & Finance;  Fashion Ethics, Sustainability, & Development; Fashion Modeling Law; a Fashion Law Practicum; & Fashion Retail Law. So right there you can see what else is encompassed by fashion law — ethics, business development, finance, retail, modeling, etc.

But one school on the map was hardly getting the message across. The west coast, Los Angeles to be specific, is now staking a claim to the development of fashion law. Loyola Law School, just this week, officially approved the launch of the school’s fashion law institute at its LA campus. LA also has a booming and thriving fashion industry, as is clearly seen in NYC, and so now LA will have its share of fashion-minded lawyers.

lawThe Institute will allow law students the ability to get a certificate in Fashion Law by taking four fashion-specific courses.  The focus will be on issues such as industry-specific contracts and law related to celebrity endorsements. Students must also take classes in related topics like intellectual property. The certificate will be available to the class of 2015. Courses already on line are — Fashion Law; Fashion Law Business Transactions; a Fashion Law Clinic; & Fashion Modeling Law. I’m unsure if these were already being offered, but I’m sure more courses will be added or further developed with the certificate now in play.

I am in love with this concept and Loyola will be encouraging exactly what I am doing right now — interacting with nonlawyers in the fashion industry and getting real world experience with emerging designers. Fashion law is growing and I’m sure in the next few years, more people will understand the practice better. Hopefully more institutes will continue to pop up, but it’s still great that so many other universities at least have fashion law as a course. More and more firms and attorneys are dedicating work to this field.

For me, wanting to work in this field, I am grateful that my school, New York Law School, offers Fashion law and most, if not all, of the intellectual property courses. It would be nice to have 1 or 2 more though! But I’m also thankful to have started my blog and really get out there to meet people in the fashion industry. I’m looking forward to the road ahead.