Fashion Week came to Chicago in the 9th Annual Fashion Focus: Chicago’s Fashion Week, which took place October 15th through 20th. There was week's worth exciting designer events including a variety of runway shows in Millennium Park which showcased the latest trends in menswear, emerging and established designers, shopping events and much more.
The runway shows were capped off by the Art of Fashion Runway Show, which took place on Friday, October 18, 2013 where ten of Chicago's finest designers debuted their Spring 2014 collections. Produced by stylechicago.com, this year’s show featured looks by established designers such as Maria Pinto, Calvin Tran, Borris Powell and more.
As I approached the Fashion Focus tent just off Michigan Avenue there was a feeling of excitement in the air as music pulsed through the tent.
The pre-show VIP cocktail reception was still going strong and the drinks by PERONI Italy and Bottega Liquid Metals flowed and Hors d'oeuvres by McCormick & Schmick's and Rockit Bar & Grill along Sushi Rolls by RA Sushi were passed.
Even before the show began fashion reigned supreme; among the crowd I saw stunning fascinators and back baring dresses mixed in with the always fashionable all black. The buzz in the air grew as the announcement was made that the show was about to start and grabbing a mini Luna Bar from the Luna Bar Lounge I followed the crowd as they went to find their seats. I found a place with a great view of the runway and settled in next to a highboy table and continued to people watch.
Stylechicago.com opened the show thanking everyone for coming and noting that this was the 6th season of The Art of Fashion (Runway Show).
And the show began. Maria Pinto opened the show featuring a collection that was sleek and contemporary and included raw hems, angular lines and amazing draping. Swaby followed, a top five finalist in Canada’s Project Runway Season 1 her looks were tough, yet feminine and were inspired by waves.
The fun really started when Lily & Migs colorful pieces hit the stage, sunny and joyful featuring sunglasses and lollypops these garments, while exciting and beachy, were immaculately tailored and used stunning fabrics.
All eyes were on the stage when Calivn Tran’s collection hit the stage; minimalist in nature, the collection wowed for its sleek and sophisticated feel. Shalini and Hector Javier Monarrez both featured lines that celebrate women: their femininity and sensuality and contained beautiful, impeccably tailored garments and gorgeous dresses and gowns.
Marc Roscoe created timeless, colorful, multi-dimensional looks while Eva Paloza went edgy, blending graphite and grays with shades of red for looks that were decidedly modern yet wonderfully feminine.
Borris Powell’s collectionfeatured effortless looks in neural colors trimmed in flairs of orange that looked stunning, yet easy to wear and Michelle Tan paired looks that were feminine and flowed with pieces that were decidedly structured.
As the show came to a close we were all reminded that we were invited to continue the party at American Junkie, located at 15 W Illinois. As I walked though the crisp October evening the few blocks from Millennium Park to Illinois Street I reflected on the show and smiled; fashion is fun, fashion is exciting, and it was an amazing to be part of that “scene”… if only for the night.
Photography by: Rebecca Henllan-Jones