How does a designer go from being a relative unknown to becoming a tastemaker? New York Fashion Now, a new exhibit at London's Victoria and Albert Museum opens on April17 and explores the stories of twenty designers who launched their own labels in the five years between 1999 and 2004. Key to the early success of some has been the focused support of the fashion press, retailers and manufacturers, as well as the funded design competitions that help the winners pay their bills. Duckie Brown, John Varvatos, Thom Browne and Cloak are the featured menswear designers. Zac Posen, Proenza Schouler, Three As Four, Lost Art, and Sean 'Diddy' Combs are among the others.