Phoenix Fashion Week 2019 recap

Phoenix Fashion Week — the Southwest’s leading fashion industry event — kicked off its annual show last Thursday, featuring emerging and established designers showcasing their newest designs. The event stretched three days and featured 24 runways of top designers from around the state.

On Friday, the “contemporary” show featured four emerging designers and three established designers. In the second half of the show, the three established designers from around the globe shared their newest pieces.

For the Stars, a Los Angeles-based fashion house, manufactures hand-made, unique designs created by one of their 11 in-house designers. During the show, the brand rolled out complementing pairs of women’s and men’s jackets.

Richie Bondoc, a fashion house based in the Philippines, is a luxury designer hoping to spread his designs around the world. The designer unveiled a set of elegant dresses adorned with dazzling gems.

Yas Couture, a Kuwait-based women’s fashion brand, creates modern luxury collections. Each design is hand-crafted by the same person to ensure the construction of the piece is consistent and flawless. On Friday, Yas Couture concluded the show with a wide spectrum of stunning designs.

In the first half of the show, the four emerging designers presented their work that stemmed from a three-month emerging designer bootcamp, which provided tools and resources to help designers grasp and perfect the business side of fashion.

Flower Power, a Phoenix-based brand that designs “modern vintage” apparel, kicked off the event with a dynamic set of dresses made of a variety of fabrics, from leather to silk. All apparel from Flower Power is designed and hand-made by owner Amber Anderson.

Sarah Christie, a Washington D.C.-based contemporary fashion brand, followed with a set of pieces constructed out of baby alpaca and llama wool. Alpaca and llamas are native to the Andes mountains in South America; the shearing process is conducted by hand and does no harm to the animal. In addition to being hypoallergenic and water resistant, alpaca and llama wool is considered among the most sustainable and environmentally-friendly fabrics for apparel.

Keith English, a Scottsdale-based menswear designer, specializes in casual and formal shirts donning high collars. Through bright, contrasting shirt collars and cuffs, English has created a unique image for his apparel that helps his work stand out. His vision is to “become the leader in American luxury fashion for men.”

MollyKate Cline, a female fashion brand, features ethically sourced, 100 percent biodegradable, “rooted in love” clothing. Cline is a college student that conflates her passion for photography, writing and clothing into an online blog and shop.

Phoenix Fashion Week, in congruence with Goodwill, hosted the “Little Black Dress Upcycle Challenge,” in which contestants found and repurposed dresses from the second-hand clothing store. Every year, the competition encourages both innovative and sustainable design practices among young designers. First prize (first picture) won a $500 cash price, and second place (second picture) won a $250 cash prize.

Ben Norman

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