On top of the Marriott Renaissance Hotel, it is a beautiful night, sitting poolside with Founder and Director of Fashion Week Columbus, Tommy McClure. FWC is celebrating its 7th year, and NID Magazine is joining in the celebration by supporting the event, and sponsoring the Official FWC Afterparty.
We talk further about FWC, and the Finale Runway Show, which will definitely be “the” place to be seen, and is sure to be one of Columbus’ biggest parties. Everyone will be included. Everyone will be made fashionistas, as attendees are photographed before the “step and repeat,” capturing all of the most beautiful people.
The fashion community is discussed. As summer turns to fall, and the nights get cooler, the area gears up to enjoy major attractions of the season: The Ohio State Buckeyes, and fashion. Yes people, fashion. Columbus is ranked 3rd in the country behind LA and NY for being a “Fashion Capital,” home to Victoria’s Secret, The Limited Stores, American Eagle, and DSW, just to name a few.
Also noteworthy is the independent pool of talent that Columbus produces, home to numerous designers, and even “Project Runway” contestants. One example is Kelli Martin, who heads up Anti-Label and the Alternative Fashion Mob, hosting a week full of events, taking place in the spring. Another example is NYC designers Joe D’Aversa and Shy Efter, who came to Columbus, founding D’Aversa Interiors. And don’t forget to add the many accessory, fine jewelry, and numerous textile designers, working with hundreds of aspiring and professional models.
Fashion Week Columbus is an event gathering designers, beauty industry people, models, and great photographers to exhibit under one roof all that is fashionable in Columbus. It’s a hot ticket, for some the equivalent of the OSU-MI game. FWC is the Super Bowl of fashion.
“Every year it gets bigger and better,” McClure said. “So much effort and talent is put into making the event a success.”
Happening now, Fashion Week runs through Oct. 15. Still to come is today’s Philanthropy Meets Fashion event, with special guest Adolfo Sanchez, the Friday Oct. 14 Buyer & Press Meet/Industry Mixer, and of course, the Saturday, Oct. 15 Finale Runway Show.
“The finale is truly a labor of love,” McClure said, “something I look forward to and enjoy each year.”
The FWC Finale Runway Show will take place at Brewmasters Gate, and afterwards, NID Magazine will host the Official FWC Afterparty with DJs Donald Glaude and Evil Twin. The who’s-who of fashion, glamor, and beauty will be present amidst spectacular entertainment.
Reflecting, it has been quite a journey for McClure, moving to the area from Dallas, TX, with no idea what Columbus had in store for him. However, he quickly found the city willing and able to promote local ventures.
“If you have a passion for something, a good idea, and a plan, people will pay attention,” McClure said. “The fashion community has offered me great support during the entire process.”
Sponsored by many corporate sponsors and fashion patrons, McClure is continually expanding the reach, breadth, and depth of the event, this year bringing fashions from featured local designers Gerardo Encinas, Joan Madison, Juan Jose Saenz-Ferreyros, Kevin Black, Stephanie Foster, Kelley Plas, and Ashley Wills. A highlight will be the presentation of runway fashions by headliner designer Adolfo Sanchez.
Former Mayor Michael Coleman had always been a figurehead during FWC, and McClure said this year newly elected Mayor Andrew J. Ginther will open the show, hosted by 10TVs Angela An. Ballet Met’s Attila Bongar, and Jessica Brown will present the opening performance.
“It’s quite a huge venture,” McClure said, “and we take pride in creating the atmosphere and energy of New York Fashion Week right here in Columbus.”
McClure points out that the entire week is run by volunteers “who share a common thread,” their passion for fashion. Illustrating the importance of this fact, McClure spoke about designer Stevie Boi pulling him aside last year, commenting on how well everything was working.
McClure said he has experienced many proud moments over the past seven years, touching the lives of students, designers, models and crew. He is already looking forward to next year’s event.
“It has always been a great compliment when people say that Fashion Week Columbus is a gift to the City of Columbus,” McClure said, “because I know everyone is working so hard to make sure the show is the best that it can be.”
For 7th Annual FWC Finale Runway tickets, click here.
For tickets to the FWC Official Afterparty with legendary DJs Donald Glaude and Evil Twin, click here.
Photography by Tony Bentivegna
About Christine Caruso
Christine Caruso is the NID Magazine Fashion Director. She also writes reviews and articles for NID.