May 8, 2012

The Art of Fashion: Chicago Designers Bring a Little Couture to the City

Chicago is famous for many things; one of those being the city's budding fashion scene. Nothing says fashion quite like Chicago's bi-annual runway show featuring the latest collections of a few of the city's hottest designers, The Art of Fashion hosted by This season, fashion goers gathered at the Museum of Broadcast Communications in Chicago's River North community to preview the Autumn/Winter 2012 collections of some of the city's best established designers: SWABY, Barbara Bates, Lara Miller, Cettina, Borris Powell, ZAMRIE, Eva Pazola, Miriam Cecila, Nora del Busto and Nade Baer.

From 5 until 10 p.m., guests enjoyed the ultimate designer shopping event, FashionChicago, which spanned the second and third floor of the building and featured 30 of Chicago's top accessories, apparel and jewelry designers. During the shopping event, I bumped into Anna Hovet, one of my favorite emerging designers, selling a few of her signature tees and an eye-catching piece called the 'Convertible Sophia Tunic' ($79). The tunic was loose fitting, but it had a snap that could be changed to make it form fitting. The top also featured a transparent mesh yoke with hearts on it. I'm not just talking it up; check it out for yourself!

A night of fashion isn't complete without food and drinks, and there was plenty to go around. Guests enjoyed glasses of wine from Leese-Fitch & Plungerhead, creative cocktails from Voli light vodkas, tasty carnitas tostaditas from Zapatista and delicious sushi rolls from one of my favorite sushi restaurants, RA Sushi. It was a night to remember.

While the food and drinks were spectacular, it was the featured designs that hit the runway that were truly of good taste. Some people's wardrobes are about a small selection of pieces that all fit within one aesthetic, but what I loved most about the Art of Fashion is that each designer mixed different aesthetics to present their signature take on current trends and classic pieces. Fall is one of my favorite seasons because it allows for layering and mixing with fashion styles. 

Some of the highlights included SWABY's signature origami technique that dominated the designer's latest collection; the ready-to-wear take on couture pieces from Lara Miller that contrasted slate gray against bold, saturated autumn colors; as well as the leather and Mad Men inspired print pieces presented by Barbara Bates. Borris Powell stayed true to himself, giving the audience a little drama with the breathtaking red ruffle dress. SWABY's cobalt blue origami dress with the matching headdress also struck me, letting me know that sometimes in the world of fashion, less is definitely not enough!

Check out some of my favorite looks of the evening:


Lara Miller




Borris Powell

Eva Pazola

Barbara Bates

Nora del Busto

The Art of Fashion 2012 runway show stayed true to the show's reputation for showcasing the hottest Chicago designers. What I loved most was the opportunity to see various design perspectives that created a larger picture of what fashion truly is, rather than competing with one another.

Which designer was your personal favorite?

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Blogger Andrea said...

Nice job Gabriel,

All the designer's work looked awesome!!

The designer that grabbed me was SWABY. Simply amazing!

May 8, 2012 at 4:11 PM  
Blogger Gabriel Charles Tyler said...


The show was amazing! SWABY led the show, and rightfully so.

Thanks for showing me some love!

- Gabriel

May 8, 2012 at 7:33 PM  
Blogger fafifab said...

Great sustainable designs to Lara Miller!

May 9, 2012 at 2:19 PM  
Blogger Maven said...

Great writeup. I went for the shopping but couldnt stay for the show. Really wished I could. I liked some of the items Swaby had ready to wear. Also Miriam Cecilia had cute pieces.

May 11, 2012 at 12:38 PM  

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