CAPTURED AND WRITTEN BY SHARRA GREENE
So get hip now, so you can say you were rocking the brands before everyone else was.
Earlier this month, I was invited by Public Relations Coordinator and FDCM network head Joanna Marcella to do press coverage and collection reviews for London based Fashion Designers' and Craftmakers' Network's Fashion Showcase and Angelman Syndrome Charity Event. The showcase served three purposes, one; to expose a select few of today's hardest working up and coming designers to fashion media, new markets, and the public, 2; to raise funds and awareness for Angelman Syndrome, a rare neuro-genetic disorder that occurs in one in 15,000 live births (for more info, click here) and 3; to provide a great atmosphere for creative entrepreneurs, tastemakers, press, and bloggers alike to network and enjoy each other's company. The event achieved all of that and more. I gladly accepted Joanna's invitation and was more than impressed by the attention grabbing talent, great social atmosphere, and bomb networking opportunities that this showcase offered.
The event was held at The Paul Hotel in Midtown Manhattan, New York City this past Saturday, April 28th. Upon arrival, I received giftbag full of event souvenirs. Glasses of wine and an array of other refreshments were served to guests. I instantly took a seat next to a group of fellow blogger baes and in doing so, made some new friends and key connections. There was literally nothing but positive vibes amongst all of the ladies, and that's not something I get to say all of the time. The rest of my day consisted of a bunch of networking as well as one on one interviews with featured designers and I truly believe several of the brands will be contributing to the fashion world in major ways . Mark my words. Check out 5 of my faves below,as well as some highlight looks from the showcase.
Chanette Laing Atelier
From the age of 3, UK based designer Chanette Laing knew she wanted to be a designer and nothing else. Having a background in painting and textile design, She aspired to merge the worlds of fashion and art. (obvi, why I love her aesthetic, we're both on the same page) Some of her signature techniques include incorporating African print as well as the "subtraction cutting technique", originally started by designer Julian Roberts. Chanette's success thus far is rooted in the fact that she puts God at the center of everything she does. When asked how she has overcome obstacles like having discouraging instructors and the feeling of being overshadowed, she says "When I remember that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me, I know that no man can stop me." Well said. View Laing's latest collection, inspired by the latest Black Panther movie and the idea of cultural pride in the gallery below.
Taylor Love Couture
Taylor Love Couture is an emerging East Coast brand that is working to be internationally known for "uniquely catering to both men, women, as well as the LGBTQ community. " Self-proclaimed as, "Riri's future designer", CEO and Designer Taylor Love says her brand is "a symbol of inclusivity and luxurious urban wear." Love designs and handcrafts all pieces herself. She cites her education at Mt. Ida College as one of the main reasons she's come this far as a designer. Taylor's design journey is similar to that of designer Zac Posen in the way that several of her family members play a major role in her creative team.
With her cousin Jordan as her business manager, her sister as lead makeup artist, her brother as the brand's lead photographer, as well as other relatives who care for her daughter while Taylor is on her design grind, she is well equipped with a strong support system. Love truly aspires to acquire Rihanna as a client (which would be another similarity to Posen) So Rihanna and team, if you happen to come across this article, Taylor is ready. Interviewing Taylor was such a pleasure. I could hear her hunger for success and passion for her craft through her words. Check out her latest Day of the Dead inspired collection that gave us all "slaying at the mansion" vibes, below.
Contact: @taylorlovecouture | firstname.lastname@example.org
Juhasz Szilvia Collections
Designer Juhasz Szilvia merges fashion, nature, and the love of her native country's landscapes to create timeless cocktail dresses and evening pieces. She collaborates with immaculate landscape photographer CZako Balazs, featuring his dynamic images of different landscapes and scenery and turning them into wearable art. Featuring an array of interesting colors, shapes, and shadows, her pieces catch the eye at first glance and are truly one of a kind from top to bottom. The work of the two artists make for a truly dynamic duo.
Szilvia wants the women who wear her clothing to experience the beauty of nature in pieces that illustrate beautiful visual stories of Hungary's natural beauty through dress. Szilvia and Balazs have been building both their individual and collective brands back in Hungary. Now, they are going international as they present their immense creativity in the United States' fashion capital, New York City. View their showstopping collection below.
Designs by K.Y
Moved by her desire to broaden her daughter's perspective of what is possible, designer Kymberly Achuba hit the ground running in 2015 and has been building her streetwear brand ever since. To this day, her daughter is her main driving force, always showing love, admiration, and a sense of pride for her mother's growing brand. Designs by K.Y. threw a much-needed street style perspective into the mix during the showcase through the use the fresh use of fur, painting, interesting prints, and oversized unisex pieces.
As icing on the cake, Kymberly was one of the few designers to give attendees a piece of her art to go home with, including a gorgeous handmade brooch in her press satchel. (She handmakes her own metal accessories, including the crown seen below). My talk with Kymberly was one of my faves of the day so be on the lookout for the full interview on my upcoming podcast, set to air very very soon (if you're subscribed, you'll be one of the first to know when!) In the meantime, peep the brand's street style realness below.
Contact: @designsbyk.y | email@example.com
Last but certainly not least, Politician turned fashion designer was definitely a highlight of the event. Initially content as a successful politician with an artistic side, Denman took a serious interest in design after conducting art classes to people with dementia and Alzheimer's and truly realizing the impact art has on people's lives. From then on, Denman began sewing in 2016 but his impeccable skillset says otherwise. Denman was the grand prize winner of Project Runway's Season 15 Remake it Work Challenge. In the midst of balancing celebrity and wedding clients, creating designs, and so much more, Kyle has also found a way to merge his love for both politics and fashion by teaching fashion to young women survivors of human trafficking, homelessness, abuse, sexual assault, and other injustices through a nonprofit organization called Freedom & Fashion.
For the showcase, Denman's red carpet yet worthy yet cutting edge design was inspired by champagne as a socio-economic symbol of the roaring 20's. His captivating white ruffled high low gown with a layered gold bustier resembled champagne bubbling over on his gorg model. Denman's design took the cake and earned him the Fashion Designers' and Craftmakers' Network Young Designer Award. As a result, the FDCM Network will also be debuting Denman's work in London, England. See his inspiration and award-winning look below.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org | @kyledenman13
More fave moments including designers Gazal Sethi of Forever Tiara and N I F F F E by Omobola Onaolapo.
Special thanks to Joanna Marcella and team for intviting me to cover this event, as well as all of the new creatives and blogger baes I met that made this event so much fun. Covering this event required constant moving around and capturing work but I promise my next event will feature more photos of my look and all of the cool people I met! Stay tuned and follow me on instagram for more content on my experience this weekend!
Credits| Designers featured( in no particular order): Taylor Love Couture, Forever Tiara, Chanette Laing, Sabina, Lisievici, Flavia Loraque Goslin, Paula Prodan, 3rd Eye Brand, Chances R Designs, N I I F F E by Omobolaji Onaolapo, Kymberly Achuba of Designs by K.Y, Szilvia Juhasz - JC Collection. Event coordinator: Joanna Marcella and team of FDCM Network
Feel free to comment your thoughts on this post and the designers. Stay tuned for more style content and my BRAND NEW PODCAST coming your way very very soon!