Some of the most innovative ideas in fashion shows lately have come from charity events. One fashion show I’m really looking forward to was conceived by Seam Collective, an initiative that matches female designers whose styles complement each other with their ideal customer, the chic, urban boutique shopper. These designers and their ideal customer have heart, though, as they’re now working hand in hand with Women Rising, a Hudson County based charity that serves women and their families in Jersey City and the surrounding communities, allowing them to achieve self-sufficiency and live safe, fulfilling and productive lives through social services, economic development and advocacy services.
Seam Collective is presenting Fenomenon, a fashion show whose proceeds benefit Women Rising, at the Canco Lofts in Jersey City on Saturday, October 25, 2008. Fenomenon will also incorporate a dance party with DJ Jen Johnson. Doors will open at 6 p.m., with a complimentary wine bar until 8 p.m., when the runway show will start. Other entertainment includes interactive photo shoots, burlesque dancers and visual art.
Designers showing at Fenomenon include Elizabeth Rynish, a founder of the Seam Collective, who primarily designs women’s dresses; Deepti Moti Babani, whose Indian heritage is a strong influence on her designs; Kattina Hilton, whose unique specialty is well-constructed and sexy one-piece swimsuits; Annie Lim, who focuses on clean-lined, wearable sportswear separates; Elizabeth Kosich, who designs high-fashion knitwear bikinis and loungewear; Shiana, an alumni of Ebony Fashion Fair who designs elegant evening wear; and Bieja-Flor, a mother-daughter team who produce designer jeans with a Brazilian body-conscious aesthetic.
The concept of Seam Collective is to present female designers who excel in a particular fashion niche together, so that this ideal customer, an affluent young professional woman, can utilize this seamless shopping experience to fill all her wardrobe needs at once. Fashion designers are often criticized for excelling in one area above others (“She’s just a dress designer” is the kiss of death from reviewers), but if we’re honest, most of them do anyway, so why not be upfront about it? This is one fashion show where I’ll genuinely want to shop.