Thursday, October 08, 2009
Not so much...but...Fashion Podium: Mayor Villaraigosa, Max Azria of BCBG and Herve Leger, and Cynthia Ruiz of the LA Mayor's Department of Cultural Affairs This week, LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa held a press conference at the California Market Center in support of LA Fashion Week and the Los Angeles Fashion Industry. Barbara Graff, organizer of Downtown Los Angeles Fashion Week and Cynthia Ruiz from the Department of Cultural Affairs, invited me to be part of this event--and I was happy to oblige.Family Portrait: Fashion Angel Awards Judges Nick Verreos, Louis Verdad, Vanessa Gonzalez and Randolph Duke, along with other LA designers pose for the press This event also marked the official announcement of the Fashion Angel Awards, a contest generously sponsored by the Department of Cultural Affairs. About a month ago, I was invited to judge this contest along with other LA fashion notables such as Nony Tochterman of Petro Zillia, Jeffrey Sebelia (winner of Season 3 Project Runway and designer of Cosa Nostra, designer Louis Verdad, former MOCA Director of Events, Vanessa Gonzalez and Randolph Duke. The Winners Are: Phong Hong, Jacquetta O'Dell and Leslie Henry, Fernanda Carneiro and their winning designs (and models) Today marked "The Big Day" as head judge, Randolph Duke--flanked by Max Axria, the Honorable Mayor Villaraigosa, Cynthia Ruiz and Ilse Metchek, the chic director of the California Fashion Association/CFA--announced the three winning designers (four, actually, since one is a design team).Project Runway Meets LA City Diva: City of LA's "fashion ambassador" Cynthia Ruiz, with designers Raymundo Baltazar and Nick Verreos The Winners were Phong Hong, Fernanda Carneiro (a Graduate of the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising/FIDM), and design team Jacquetta O'Dell and Leslie Henry. Each will get to participate in their own fully-funded runway show on October 13th at the Geffen Contemporary MOCA as part of Downtown Los Angeles Fashion Week. I remember that they were my favorites during the judging. Hong's designs were flirty and oh-so-feminine and Brazilain-born Carneiro's designs were wearable but still had pretty and unique details. Petro Zillia already carries her line and Nony Tochterman, its owner, says her clients "just love" her dresses. Lock and Key: Designers Jacquetta O'Dell and Leslie Henry with their key-and-belt top and wooden door skirt Finally, I loved O'Dell and Henry's conceptual wooden designs, they were very Hussein Chalayan and I felt it would be great to show the rest of the World that LA wasn't just about jeans and t-shirts but we also had "artiste" designers. At the press conference, I was happy to run into one of my best friends, designer Raymundo Baltazar and Alison Nieder of California Apparel News, who was there to cover the event. I also said "Hola" to former Miss International 2007, Priscila Perales, from Mexico. Las Misses: Nick Verreos, Miss International and Miss Mexico '07 Priscila Perales, and Raymundo Baltazar Of course I will be there next Tuesday to check out the four outstanding up-and-coming LA designers who will show at the Fashion Angel Awards Fashion Show. I think Mayor Villaraigosa summed it up best during his press conference, "Our city is no longer just the fashion capital of the West Coast; LA is one of the major fashion capitals of the world". See you at LA Fashion Week! Click HERE for more info. on all the LA Fashion Week Events at ApparelNews.net Click HERE for the schedule of Downtown Los Angeles Fashion Week.