Since the beginning of the year, I have been working on a fashion project in the city of Cincinnati.
Being born in the city of Cincinnati, I’ve always known that this city has been slow in regards to the fashion scene.
After traveling to various remote cities that have a well-grounded fashion scene, I’ve come to realize that those cities have many things that Cincinnati COULD develop through time.
Money is a given, but what about the other factors that could help build the fashion scene here?
Starting with quality fashion designs and styling, to community support of the art surrounding fashion.
I’ve seen the difference between our city and those remote cities, but they don’t have to be that much different.
While planning this fashion event, I kept these thoughts in mind.
I knew that I had rarely been to a fashion event that I felt was groundbreaking, professional and full of life.
I wanted to create something that was based on high fashion, future trends and my love for fashion.
So, that’s what I did.
I booked a venue called the Hoffner Lodge, which stands in the heart of Northside, Cincinnati. I chose this venue because it is in a thriving area of the city, and due to the historic value that the building has. Being built in 1885, the Hoffner Lodge still holds remnants of the past in many ways. From the architecture of the building to the interior that has been preserved for many years-I knew that the Hoffner Lodge was the perfect venue.
I reached out to one of the best makeup artists in the city, Tequana Colvin, and one of the best hair stylists in the city, Nigel Mask to head the beauty portion of the fashion show. In doing so, they took my fashion inspiration and created hair and makeup moods for each piece of the show. These mood boards were built to compliment the high fashion looks that I styled for the runway. These two amazing head stylists were also in charge of acquiring several hair stylists and makeup artists to execute the specific looks for the show.
I reached out to some of the top modeling agencies in the city to acquire the right models for the fashion show. In Cincinnati, everyone believe that they are models in one way or another. I beg to differ. Unfortunately, I received the word ‘NO’ more than ever when dealing with modeling agencies. I couldn’t understand why agencies weren’t prone to help me, due to the fact that I had such big intentions for this show. But, I had to keep working. After holding various casting calls, refusing to settle, and continuously networking to find models, I was able to lock down 25 male and female models.
After pulling together a strong team of artists, I knew that I needed key assistance in styling, dressing and running the event. I was approached by two budding fashion enthusiasts, Nicole Miller and Brett Cummings. With my fellow stylist, Bebe L’Mode by my side, I knew that the show couldn’t go wrong. These amazing artists walked hand in hand with me through the planning and execution of the show.
The inspiration for the fashion portion of the show came from the new Fall and Winter trend report of 2016. I wanted to think forward, as a remote city would do. I pulled inspiration from the street first. I feel that the intersection between high fashion and street fashion is so important at this point. I see various designers pulling from the styles that dominate the street, and I think it’s powerful. I believe this is important because we are beginning to see high fashion hold the high quality that it always has, while leveling with the realistic looks that everyday people rock. I also pulled inspiration from the metallic trends, and the wearable lingerie trend that has been buzzing.
I split the show up into three sets, each one representing a different realm of the upcoming trends for the year.
The planning and preparation for this show was undoubtedly the most difficult set of obstacles that I’d ever been faced with. I’ve always been good with the artistry of fashion styling, but this show made me flex my business muscle. From the event artwork, to the advertisement, to the promoting of the event, to remaining the direct contact for the 50 people involved in this fashion show. No, this wasn’t easy. But, I’m thrilled that I worked through every step of this show.
The turnout for the event was better than I thought. Not only did I receive the support of my family and friends, but also of people that I did not know. That was most important to me. I wanted the even to give the art lovers a chance to see something amazing, and to also get the chance to network with like-minded people. I met so many people that felt inspired by what we did that night. That’s all I wanted. There is only more to come from here.