Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Red Hot Runway

Where do I even start? First of all, I'm so sorry for my lack of updates lately; I know excuses aren't cool so I apologize and I hope I can make up for lack of posting with this update.

Tonight was amazing. I've never seen Columbia students shine so brightly on so many levels. Not to brag about my school, but we know how to work and work it. This year's Red Dress Party, nationally known for hosting a benefit each year to raise money to help fight HIV/AIDS, had a little publicity from Columbia College. Columbia's PRSSA Vice President Kate Jacobsen, senior, decided that the best way to utilize the PR skills of its members was to integrate a fashion show in with a charity.

PR + Fashion + Red Dress Party = Perfect Combination

Not only were Columbia designers featured in a fashion show, but all the proceeds collected at the event go towards the charity event held on April 16th, at 525 W. Monroe. 

When I met up with Kate, it was all smiles. The event went so smoothly you'd think professionals organized it, when it was Columbia's great PRSSA team. Kate's thoughts after the event were just as positive, "Everything just fell into place...We just meshed the two ideas of organizing a fashion show along with using the PR skills we've worked on in classes." Among all of the sponsors for the event, Agency Galatea helped tremendously. The Director of Runway at Galatea, Publicist for the Chicago Red Dress Party and fellow Chicago blogger (The Bowtie Memoirs), Ryan M. Beshel felt great about the Red Hot Runway and is excited for the publicity to hit the streets and the papers, "With publicity--period-- it's about getting the word out. It's all about exposure for the event in April." With the sheer amount of students, press, and Chicagoans at the event, the news will fly across the city in no time.

I interviewed PRSSA member Miranda Cummings on the event and she filled me in on all the details. The sponsors were excellent in providing prizes for the top three designers, Fisherman's Fabrics donated $500 total in award certificates so the designers can get more fabric, Apple's Columbia store donated an iPod nano for the first prize winner, gift certificates to The Shops at North Bridge, along with the top three designs being featured in a display window at the 900 North Michigan Shops. Agency Galatea provided models used during the show. All of the sweet treats at the event were provided by CCC's Marketing Communications Department and the beverages were provided by SmartWater and VitaminWater.

The contest began a month ago, with the application process for the designers. All applicants could send in their resumes, portfolios, and sample pieces to be chosen as one of the lucky 15 designers to compete in the show. Thirty applicants were cut in half and their designs were judged based on the runway walk, wearability, concept of design related to the cause and construction. The judges were Kevin Aeh of Time Out Chicago, Miriam Cecilia Carlson designer, Candace Jordan of Candid Candace and Jerry Svec, founder of XOXO. There was a lovely reception before the runway and naturally an abundance of stylish Chicagoans. 

Mixing prints!

Bryan Villalobos.
New fashion friends <3

The bowtie: Vintage Valentino.

Love the mix of textures.

Just a splash of red.

Kate Jacobsen (VP) and Lauren Hadeed (Pres of PRSSA)

Rachel Lynch.

Sarah Elabdi, far right.

Bright red & polka dots.

Suspenders & bowties.

Fashion writer for Echo.

Love a good MOD look.

Maddy Browning.

Follow her: Sweet-Talk

And now for the runway:
(Dresses are in the order they appeared, if you know the designer of the dress, please tell!)

It's the most amazing tulle dream. Ever.

Leather & studs. 
Designed by Kelly Coll, senior. Follow her at Medusa & Merriweather.

Wait for it...

I am obsessed with the backs of dresses.
This dress would win in my book, for the back alone.

Designer: Jiayin Zheng

Designer Jiayin Zheng, post festivities. 

Miranda Cummings & Kate Jacobsen.
A job well done, ladies. 

Thanks for reading followers!
See, I made up for my lack of posting with lots of info, photos and fashion.

See you all soon. There's an event at Juicy Couture on Thursday, hope to see you there.

"I am married to fashion and I will remain faithful." - Dirk Bikkembergs

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Riviera

Last week The Pretty Reckless, a new found love. This week I got to see my favorite band, Bright Eyes. It's supposed to be the farewell tour of Bright Eyes, the end of an era. Needless to say I've been very emotional over all this; Conor Oberst was the soundtrack to my adolescence. And the latest album, The People's Key didn't disappoint and the concert was perfection in every way. Not only did I predict the set list based off of my personal favorites, but Conor performed beautifully. The only way the night could've been better is if I got to meet him. Sadly, I didn't but some friends and I are currently planning on going to Milwaukee in April to see Bright Eyes one more time. I'll get back to you on those details.

But for now I'm going to leave you with more concert fashion. The Pretty Reckless was all about edginess. Lots of leather, thick make-up, very punk meets grunge meets Victorian dolls. But at a different venue, The Riviera, with a different style of music entirely (indie-folk-amazing) brings differences in the crowd. Personally I keep the same aesthetic, just tweaking bits and pieces for the crowd. But it's never about what I'm wearing, it's always about the personal styles of those around me. I went through the never ending line to se what everyone was wearing, and the styles I came across ranged in variety as much as Bright Eyes' albums.

So jealous of these three, who were right by the door.
Printed skirts, military coats and ripped jeans.

Dressed in brights that also keep us Chicagoans warm in the wind.
(Isn't it cute how they all wear similar glasses?)

All black is always appropriate especially when you have a giraffe blanket.
As always, obsessed with oversized collars on winter coats.

I love how she's daring enough to wear gladiator sandals, but she balanced it out with a thick red checkered flannel. 

More ripped jeans, floral skirts and cute boots.
Beards are also very trendy these days.

The trick is dressing in multiple layers.
These two got the idea perfectly.

Such a happy color!

More military coats.
Love. Obsessed. Worship.
But I would like some sunshine these days.

Cowboy boots are a nice surprise north of the Mason-Dixon line.

My friends, Chelsey and Kayla.
Chelsey's scarf was bigger than her body.
Which is perfectly acceptable. 

Skinny jeans. Glasses. Military.
(I think we're seeing a trend in the Bright Eyes crowd.)

Thrift store scarves. And more layers.

A happy group of friends decked in everything from leather to paisley prints and old concert tees.

All black, always and maybe some camel.

Crazy tights. Knee-high boots. Cross-body bags.

I have a thing for marquees.
Especially when they say Bright Eyes.

Just because. 

I was going to snag more photos of the line, but then everyone started getting filtered into the theatre so naturally I needed to get back to my spot to ensure an amazing seat for the show. Tomorrow night I'll be at SubT to see some local bands, Farwell, Stay Golden and Believe You Me. So come out and support local talent! Doors open at 6:00 and the show's at 6:30!

"Fashion is an extension of your personality." - Gwen Stefani