Mercedes-Benz of Buffalo Fashion Week
Buffalo kicks off Fashion Week at the Galleria
Asst. Life Editor
Since 1943, Paris, Milan and New York City have been widely known for their Fashion Weeks, which take place biannually in September and February.
Buffalo, New York's second largest city is now ready for a chance to shine. In 2009, Buffalo's first ever Fashion Week began and the tradition has remained ever since. From Sept. 3 to Sept. 10 at the Walden Galleria Mall is a fashion action-packed week. This past Saturday, the Galleria kicked off the week by hosting four runway shows, featuring clothing from H&M kids, Macy's adults, H&M adults, and BEBE.
None of this could have been possible without the founder and coordinator of Buffalo Fashion Week, Lauren Byrd from RPM Entertainment Productions, who was born and raised in the Queen City. Thanks to her idea to involve downtown Buffalo in the fashion field, her show has been a success each year and has only been getting stronger.
"I wanted to bring something here because every other major city had it," Byrd said.
Byrd, with the help of RPM, sponsors such as Vitamin Water, KC You There PR, and Mercedes-Benz, as well interns and volunteers have made the week an annual attraction.
The goal of the event is not only to bring limelight to the city, but to enrich its people with more culture.
"[The event is held] to bring something else out there to Buffalo. It's the second largest city in New York, so why not put something together… create some fun in Buffalo," said Karina Lopez of KC You There, who handles the PR aspect of the week. The week also serves as revenue for designers and stores to show off their collections, and for fashion-conscious people like customers, buyers and local boutiques to get a sneak preview.
This is the first year in which actual designers, whom Byrd has hunted and gathered herself, will be participating.
"This year it's all about the designers and their clothing… most of them have actually shown in New York Fashion Week and Paris Fashion Week," Lopez said.
Some come from cities as close as NYC and from places as far as Hungary for the opportunity to present their lines for the first time in Buffalo Fashion Week. Other designers are veterans to this, and Buffalo is honored to have them dedicate their time and work.
Byrd has upped her game this year with the impressive array of talent she has harvested for a week that fashion fanatics are sure to love. Starting eight months in advance, this year's week is the best yet. Unlike last year, this year hosts three more runway shows along with the main show at the convention center on Sept. 10, which will feature five designers and close out the week.
The next event takes place Wednesday, Sept. 7 at the Mansion on Delaware Ave. (414 Delaware Ave.). This event includes two shows: Reckless Necklace and Thomas Lee Designs. Tickets for this event cost only $15 and each event will host about 100-125 people. Among those in attendance will include notable magazine Teen Vogue, and other fashion experts.
Buffalo Museum of Science presents Modahnik on day three, Thursday, Sept. 8.
Kahindo Mateene, a fashion designer from the Congo and one of the 2011 Designers in Residence in the Chicago Fashion Incubator at Macy's, who's women's line is an embodiment of her culture. Tickets for this day cost $25.
Day four marks the last, but certainly not the least of the events at the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center. This is the main stage runway event and with tickets as high as $75, the most expensive. Viewers get their money's worth thought, because five designer's lines are present. House of Versatile Styles, Jimmy Lee, Lawrence Pizzi, VW "Uncapped," Solome and Zita Pop are all there to please the audience with their upcoming lines.
Other past events during Buffalo Fashion Week included a "Notorious Public" high-fashion photo shoot in Niagara Square on Tuesday, Sept. 6. This event gave the public a chance to be a part of what goes on "behind the scenes" during this three-hour-long period. Also, an exclusive designer meet and greet will take place on Friday, Sept. 9 at the Larken Center of Commerce. Here, VIP will get to preview what's to come the following night for the most anticipated night of Buffalo Fashion Week.