They've cited so many designers for Coty Awards this year that it might be easier to list those who didn't make it.
Fifteen designers will appear on the Coty ballot, hoping to win the fashion industry's top kudos, according to an announcement in New Yokr this week. Eight of them are assured of some honor: return (second-time) awards; Hall of Fame (three-time) awards; special awards; and the like. Of the remaining seven, three will be chosen from a ballot to be sent to fashion editors across the country and awarded in the fall.
Moreover, the awards panel-made up of New York fashion editors, publishers and others in the business-has come up wiht a new category in order to heap new awards on those who already have Hall of Fame recognition. Geoffrey Beene, Halston, Calvin Klein and Ralph Lauren will be cited for developing a "total American look" and focusing fashion attention on New York-thus taking some of the spotlight away from Paris and Milan.
Joan Vass, whose knits are made cottage-industry-style in New York, and jewelry designer Barry Kieselstein-Cord will get special awards for the individuality of their work.
Mary McFadden will move into the Hall of Fame for her designs for women, and Alexander Julian gets a return award for his menswear.
Gil Truedesson will pick up a special award for his men's shoe designs, and Conrad Bell for his men's furs.
Only two award categories will be decided by balloting.Norma Kamali, Perry Ellis and Willi Smith are in the running for "outstanding creative achievement" in the women's design arena. Calvin Klein, Gil Truedesson, Jhane Barnes and Lee Wright are the nominees in the menswear category-in which the top two names will share the honors.
The awards, first given in 1943, have always been sponsored by the Coty cosmetic company.
Norman Norell was given the first Coty Award, with special awards going to milliners Lilly Dache and John Fredericks. The number of winners gradually grew to five or six until 1965-when 13 awards were given, including a joint special award to 10 young designers. Last year seven winners were named, including top awards to Charles Suppon, Bill Atkinson and Bill Kaiserman.