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Wednesday, Oct 01, 2014
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Tampa Bay, St. Pete fashion weeks kick off with stylish events

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As the frenzy that is New York Fashion Week winds to a close, the style spotlight will swing closer to home as Tampa Bay Fashion Week and St. Pete Art & Fashion Week get underway.

Nine days of fashions shows, style and beauty seminars, giveaways, and of course, parties begin Friday, Sept. 13 as part of Tampa Bay Fashion Week, while St. Pete Art & Fashion Week begins it’s six-day run Monday.

Now in its sixth year, Tampa Bay Fashion Week brings local designers, boutiques and businesses together to promote the local fashion industry. Events are held at various locations throughout Tampa Bay.

Events kick-off at 10 a.m. Friday with a fashion show and style workshop by author and speaker Jackie Walker, also known as the “Dr. of Closetology” at International Plaza.

“We have the talent that resides in the area and its just starting to get recognized,” said Nancy Vaughn, owner of WhiteBook agency, one of the producers of Fashion Week. “There are people interested in fashion and want to have it be successful in our market and that’s really helped the event to grow. It’s still Tampa Bay style, but we are allowing it to grow the way our region is growing. And it’s really cool and exciting to watch it happen.”

This year’s returning designers include: Audrey Pat McGhee, k.hendrix by Kimberly Hendrix, Monstruosite by Dolly Donshey, Sandra Hagen and Shear Enterprises by Rhonda Shear. Among the new designers featured on the runways are Elizabeth Racker, Lolodaisy by Lorena, Rachana Suri and SW8 Clothing, plus an exclusive International Academy of Design & Technology Student Showcase featuring students: Alexandra Lin; Carly Edwards; Gwen Everett and Ivette “Gigi” Guerra-Gonzalez.

Among the highlights this year:

♦ On Saturday, Piquant Epicure & Cuisine (1633 W. Snow Ave, Tampa) will host a vintage collection of bridal dresses and a brunch where attendees can learn the latest in bridal fashions, hair and makeup.

♦ Sunday, kids can get in on the runway action when the Glazer Children’s Museum presents Kid Couture, with fashion workshops, stylish crafts and more.

♦ And on Tuesday, the St. Petersburg Museum of History will present the History of Fashion with a look under at one of fashion’s underpinnings — underwear, from the Roman amphitheaters to Lady Gaga.

♦ On Sept. 20, designers will showcase their latest collections at the Designer Runway Shows & FWTB Boutique at 6 p.m. at the Hilton Tampa Downtown.

For a complete list of Tampa Bay Fashion Week events, times and locations, visit www.fashionweektampabay.com.

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Across the bay, St. Pete Fashion Week will showcase designs by Curb Gear, Helen Gerro, Boutique La Rochelle, Diana’s Tropical Wear, Two Coconuts Swimwear Jacka Designs and others. The event, which kicks off Monday and runs through Sept. 21, was created by Dona M. Crowley, and is designed to bring business to St. Petersburg and promote art and fashion.

Public events kick off with the Naughty vs. Nice Fashion Experience, a rock-themed fashion experience at Club Detroit. A wine and fashion reception is on Thursday at Suzette’s on Central. And on Sept. 20, Art & Cocktails for a Cause will raise money for Morning Star School.

On Sept. 21, St. Pete Fashion Week designers will showcase their latest creations with a fashion show at One Progress Plaza.

For a complete list of events, visit www.stpeteartandfashionweek.com

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