Paris, New York, London, Milan...Providence? Ten years ago you may not have thought so, but now, Providence is decidedly on the fashion map thanks to StyleWeek. Inspired by those aforementioned fashion capitals, StyleWeek is a professional production that focuses on the business of fashion, as well as promoting art and design. Founded in 2009 by Rosanna Ortiz, this fashion week has become New England's premiere fashion event, showcasing nearly 200 designers over the years from the U.S. and beyond. Yes, all that in lil' Rhody. Glamorous as it is (& it IS!), this is much more than just a fun party. StyleWeek was created to serve as an incubator for designers, while generating an economic spark in Rhode Island. As StyleWeek progressed, it came to include working with local schools for its design competition, "SEED", where students create wearable art. It's in that sentiment that StyleWeek celebrated a decade this year. What was supposed to be an elaborate affair, was scaled back to comply with CDC guidance for the pandemic, but the heart of StyleWeek was still felt. An intimate, invite-only, outdoor runway show was held, featuring local elementary school students and their out-of-the-box designs. It was only fitting that the evening culminated with an avant garde show from acclaimed handbag designer, Kent Stetson, who has been a part of StyleWeek since the beginning.
The fashion world is evolving, now more than ever, but StyleWeek continues to evolve and push the limits, to adapt to the current climate. As I've said before I'm no fashion expert, I'm a fan. I feel very fortunate to have, quite literally, a front row seat to an event that not only celebrates art and culture, but simultaneously boosts the local economy. Here's to you, StyleWeek, and the next decade ahead!
Photos Courtesy: Myke Yeager Photography