18 Days: Fashion designers take on football

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NEW YORK -- Fashion and football combine to celebrate Super Bowl XLVIII as Bloomingdale's, the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) and the NFL are teaming up to auction off 48 designer helmets starting Wednesday.

The 48 helmets were created by 48 designers, including Billy Reid, Betsey Johnson, Kenneth Cole, Todd Snyder and Donna Karan. They will be unveiled in the Bloomingdale's windows on 59th Street and Lexington Avenue in Manhattan starting today at 5 p.m. ET.

"With the Super Bowl coming to the backyard of our flagship store in New York, we consider it our obligation as a brand to participate," Frank Berman, Bloomingdale's executive vice president of marketing, said Tuesday. "Other stores may do functional athletic merchandise, but for us it was more about creating a buzz and a real injection of Bloomingdale's into a very significant pop culture moment."

Berman said a helmet was chosen as the item to work with because of its uniqueness and for the different treatments that could be applied by the designers, such as sequins, crystals and feathers. The artists were given a blank helmet and a Super Bowl XLVIII logo to use as the starting point for creating their products.

"I think the results were nothing short of amazing creativity from the designers," Berman said.

The helmets will be sold in an auction that runs from today until Feb. 4 (the Super Bowl is Sunday, Feb. 2). Berman said Bloomingdale's has done a number of auctions over the years, and they've always been a fun way to get customers involved.

Fans can visit bloomingdales.com/superbowlhelmets to bid on the 48 helmets. The minimum bid for each helmet is $248 -- a reference to the 48th Super Bowl being hosted by two states, New York and New Jersey.

All net profits from the auction will go to the NFL Foundation, which helps youth and high school football programs, promotes safety, and aids community efforts such as NFL Play 60.

“We are excited to team up with Bloomingdale’s and the CFDA to auction off designer Super Bowl XLVIII helmets to support the work of the NFL Foundation,” NFL VP of consumer products Natara Holloway said in a press release. “This unique collaboration is another way for fans of football and fashion to get closer to the game and be a part of the Super Bowl XLVIII festivities happening all across the New York-New Jersey region.”

Come back daily for more on the issues, logistics and personalities surrounding Super Bowl XLVIII.