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Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Portland Fashion Week Reveals a Glimpse of Its Design Talent

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Wed, Jun 5, 2013 at 2:14 PM

Portland Fashion Week (not this one, the other one) has been pretty quiet about who is actually going to be on its runway—we've known they are running an emerging designer contest, and that they are doing a bridal showcase, but the rest has been a waiting game as they sorted through an application process.

There are still some holes to be filled in, but the headliners have all been announced. There aren't any huge huge names, but there are some promisingly familiar ones, as well as the intrigue of a fair number who are new to me. They'll be revealing, I'm sure, a lot more leg in the coming months (the event goes down September 12-14), but for now here are the ones I know:

1) The September 13 bridal showcase will be headlined by Sophie Chang, who's been busy making a name for herself with fantasy-worthy bridal gowns that are more classic than many of the unconventional bridal looks that are popular on the local scene. She may not utterly surprise you but her pieces are drop dead pretty.

2) Hello Eliza shows on the 14th. Her stuff is super bright, funky, and clubby. Think Solestruck crowd (which featured her at their June show).

3) Nelli Millard is a Russian designer from Bend who's made appearances at PFWs of yore, including a past emerging designer competition that I happened to help judge. Her construction is good and I really love the drama of some of her ideas. Last year at FASHIONxt she started to synthesize it together, and I'll be curious to see where she's at in terms of solidifying her focus.

4) EG Page and Shop Adorn are among the promised presentations from retailers. That means it's more about styling than design, but that can be fun to watch.

5) Devonation is returning! I was bummed when this emerging designer moved to Seattle soon after he had begun to make waves here. It will be very exciting to see what he's been up to since he's been gone.

6) Well this is interesting: Apparently ex-Project Runway contestant Joshua Christensen is showing on the 14th, too, proving veterans of the reality TV show don't only have love for that other Portland fashion week.

UPDATE! According to FASHIONxt Associate Producer (and Mercury contributor) Elizabeth Mollo, "What they have up is incorrect. Joshua Christensen is showing with FashioNXT, and not showing at all with PFW." Oh... snap!

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There are plenty more names over here to ponder while we wait to hear who the emerging designers, kids & teens designers, and activewear designers are too.

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