DC Fashion Week showcases internationally-inspired collections
International designers presented their latest collections at DC Fashion Week’s culminating event
DC Fashion Week culminated in an International Couture Collections Showcase that focused on international design presenting a diverse range of styles. This event, the last of four that took place from Sept. 29 to Oct. 1, featured international designers who presented their latest collections.
The theme was reflected in both the origins of each collection and the designers themselves. Exhibiting designers included Valenncii Ventora, Jah Kente International, J Bri Designs and Chic and Pretty.
The show took place in the National Housing Center Atrium, which features floor to ceiling windows. Before the show, the atrium was filled with lively chatter and music as guests emitted positive energy and excitement about the creative projects.
Valenncii Ventura presented work early in the showcase with incredible handcrafted pieces. The collection featured face coverings made of lace, zipper accents and rough cuts. Unique accents such as white feathers and chains stood out on otherwise black outfits. Ventura clearly wanted to break down some barriers with the collection.
Chic and Pretty’s collection was a stand out addition to the evening. The Moroccan pieces had a wide variety of designs, echoing the designer’s point that “we have everything.” The collection stood out not only due to its jeweled ornate pieces but because of its solid colored capes. The pieces are all handmade, making the intricate floral designs more impressive. Color schemes ranged from black and white to red with complex gold accents. Each design contrasted with the next to formulate a still-cohesive collection.
Next in the lineup was J Bri Designs, led by self-taught entrepreneur-designer Debrah Sterling. The collection utilized black and white color schemes and sparkles. JBri Designs featured low v-neck items and dresses with side cut-outs. The collection’s unique cuts and wide variety of sizes aligned with J Bri Design’s message: “we don’t discriminate.” Sterling explained they cater to people of all ages, races and sizes, which gathered verbal support from attendees.
Later, Jah Kente International stunned the crowd with a bold collection and message. The collection opened with a red drop-waist dress. It continued with unique color combinations and statement pieces, utilizing combinations like yellow and purple, which was unique to the stage. “Fashion is personal” and “you define fashion for yourself,” the designer said. This message, reflected in designs that catered to a variety of preferences, was an important takeaway from the evening.
Ean Williams, the executive director of DC Fashion Week, was another highlight of the showcase. Williams was passionate about the event and kept the crowd energetic and enthusiastic. The event put forth the mission to make D.C. as iconic as other cities leading in fashion.
This article was edited by Maria Tedesco, Patricia McGee and Abigail Pritchard. Copy editing done by Isabelle Kravis and Charlie Mennuti.