Prabal Gurung, Fern Mallis, Coach, Linda Fargo Among 2024 ACE Awards Winners 

The accessories industry gathered Tuesday night at New York’s Pierre Hotel to celebrate the Accessories Council Excellence Awards, which also coincided with the organization’s 30th anniversary.

The awards show honored many designers and executives across the accessories industry, awarding Coach with Brand of the Year, Prabal Gurung for Designer of the Year, Fern Mallis for Hall of Fame and Larroudé for Rising Star, among others. 

Mallis, who received her award from TV personality Tamron Hall, reflected on her upbringing and how it shaped her storied career in fashion. 

“I grew up in the accessories business,” she said. “My father was a salesman for scarves and my love of this industry started by going to work with him every possible day off from school. I loved being in the art department watching the women painting every single scarf design — intricate paisleys in several colorways. This was long before computers and programs, and I would watch my dad charm the fashion directors. It was the best education that I could ever get and I knew how to tie a scarf a million ways.” 

The Hall of Fame award was Mallis’ second honor of the day. That morning, Mallis alongside former Council of Fashion Designers of America president Stan Herman were honored with a bench in their names in Bryant Park. 

Gurung was awarded Designer of the Year from his close friends Tina Leung, Laura Kim, Phillip Lim and Ezra J. William. Instead of discussing his work as a fashion designer, Gurung used his acceptance speech to make a statement on current events. 

“I’m quite surprised and astounded to see that we’re not able to have nuanced conversations around what’s happening all around the world and all around us,” he said. “Because, I would like to believe in the community because our fashion industry is a trend-setting industry. I think if we can start a trend where we can have all of these difficult conversations, yet not hate each other, if we can have a conversation where we can see each other, hear each other out, just agree gracefully apologetically, but also love wholeheartedly, that’s the trend I want to support.” 

Marina Larroude, Prabal Gurung, Awkwafina, Tina Leung, Ezra J. William and Phillip Lim

Marina Larroudé, Prabal Gurung, Awkwafina, Tina Leung, Ezra J. William and Phillip Lim.

Tiffany Sage/Courtesy of

Linda Fargo was also honored during the awards show, receiving the Style Icon award from fashion designer Michael Kors. 

“Developing a style does not happen overnight,” she said. “It’s akin to almost building a home. You build on it over time, mistakes are definitely made, but honestly it should just be fun and creative, otherwise what’s the point? Style also really helps us to shape ourselves and sometimes make ourselves even more what we are today. Style can do that for you. In a world where image and our appearances are exponentially more important every day, style choices have become really critical to take us to where we want to be, opening minds and doors and to tell our own stories.” 

Larroudé cofounder and chief creative officer Marina Larroudé reflected on the brand’s rapid growth after launching at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 during her acceptance speech, highlighting the importance of the brand’s collaborations. 

“What I particularly love about what we build at Larroudé, beyond our products, beyond our shoes and everything that we do, it’s the amazing collaborations and everything that we post with these amazing creatives that we get to work with,” she said. “Altuzarra, Oscar de la Renta, Jonathan Cohen, Jennifer Fisher — there are so many others. In addition to being a brand, Larroudé is almost like a record label, or a platform, however you want to call it, it goes back to our slogan, ‘you, us, we, all.’ I love my collaborations as much as our customers do and I cannot wait to do many more in the future.” 

Other awards went to Cult Gaia for Design Innovation, Foster Grant for Legacy Award, Aria Logistics for Operational Excellence, Elyse Walker for Specialty Retailer, Dana Covarrubias for Style Influencer and Jared for Retailer of the Year.

Notable attendees also included Chrissy Teigen, Awkwafina, Marni Senofonte, Coco Rocha, Vera Wang, Rebecca Minkoff, Lynn Yaeger, Stuart Vevers and others. 

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