Sunday, March 30, 2014

Behind the Fashion Scene

Depending on the number of looks to showcase, a fashion show may run from as short as 7 minutes to up to 20 minutes.  While it takes only a short moment to highlight different styles, this affair actually takes days, weeks and most of the time months to prepare.  

Such is the case for Brave Wings Fashion Show, scheduled on June 21st 2014, yet it already had its first model casting call on March 21st.  It’s with great joy that I get to assist my friends in putting together this charitable fashion show and was glad to see familiar faces and “kababayans” auditioning for the catwalk.  Don’t you fret if you missed it, there’s more to come.  Visit and LIKE Chasing Sheila and Brave Wings Facebook pages for casting announcements.

While the actual runway event would not start until 2 or 3 hours after the doors open, photographers and correspondents, like myself checked in for our media credentials and watched the crew label the final VIP seat assignments at the Phoenix Fashion Week Spring Into Fashion hosted by the Arizona Center on March 28th.   

Straight to the comfortable media lounge, presented by Cabana Modern Apartment Homes,  charging stations and swags await as we mix and mingle with fellow journalists and media professionals, and photo-ops with featured boutique owners and stylists.

Usually behind the lenses, we give credit to these awesome photographers for their keen eyes and perfect timing to capture the beauty of fashion.

L-R: Rosemary Woods, Daniel Vertuno, Steve Trujillo, Hassan Kareem and Steve Yap

During the press conference I got to ask the top stylists what spring trend is their biggest “No! No!”  To which, each expert replied… 
  • For those with long torso, Jenesis Laforcarde says no to wearing rompers (can you imagine?). 
  • Denim skirt does not appeal to Vanessa Gonzales and wants that trend gone (umm, I might have a skort but not skirt, so I’m good). 
  • Yekatherina Bruner doesn’t want to see anyone wear age inappropriate clothes, and that goes for old and young (totally agree)! 
  • Rochelle York says that boot cut pants are ok but bell-bottoms that starts from the knees must go (skinny jeans then – check)! 
  • Finally, Jessica Hunter says no more to gym clothes if you are not working out (ah good thing I work out at home). Good pointers!!

With my love for fashion, nothing goes unnoticed.  Meticulously observed, the biggest WOW factor for me at Spring Into Fashion affair is the hairstyling!   Huge kudos to Lauren Bates, though behind the scene, her artistry made a fabulous impact on stage.  I like the sleek wrapped high up ponytail look she designed for Jenesis and Divaz Boutique show.  I’ve only known Lauren about a week and must have spoken with her less than 5 minutes, yet her youth and fresh aura is very intriguing to me.  Fingers crossed, I am trying to score an interview with her, look out to learn more about her here.

There’s so much to say and critique in last Saturday’s fashion show so let me briefly share my viewpoint and let these camera moments do the rest of the talking:

Divaz Boutique styled by Jenesis Laforcarde

Jenesis Laforcarde rocked the runway! This is my favorite collection of the night.  You can’t go wrong by opening with swimwear by Dolcessa, 2013 PhxFW Emerging Designer of the Year.  I love all the bright color combinations and especially pleased that there are no floral prints, to which Miranda Priestly sarcastically said, “Florals for Spring? Groundbreaking” and then pierced her lips!

Fresh Start Treasures styled by Vanessa Gonzales

Equally impressive is Vanessa Gonzales for styling Fresh Start Treasures, a resale boutique and an extension of the Fresh Start Women’s Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping empower women.  It must be very challenging to create a cohesive collection when pulling from a 2nd hand store.  No problem to Vanessa’s keen eye and great taste, she put up a classy and sophisticated runway show. 

Clothes Minded styled by Rochelle York

WWRD, as in "What Would Rochelle Do?" literally is what I ask myself when I cannot decide what shoes to pair with my outfit or when trying to figure out what scarf to wear with my dress.  She displayed her simple, up to date and effortless styling, and my fave look is the blue Christie Skirt by Linden (designed by Jennifer Lynn) paired with wide v-neck muscle tee accessorized with some serious gold chain layering.  Now, if I could only sport a fierce blonde pixie like this model, I'd be made!

Leggings is one fashion trend that seems to be transitioning well from Winter into Spring says Allie Olson, owner of Allie Ollie Boutique.  Mixed with resort style clothing, that's exactly what Yeka highlighted on the runway.  From retail merchandising, Allie has ventured into fashion design and I just wish that her own designs were shown too.

7 Diamonds styled by Jessica Hunter

I am delighted to see men's fashion featured in last Saturday's affair.  You can't miss the intricate details of 7 Diamonds button down shirts, that is if you are able to take away your eyes from these pretty models =)  Phoenix Fashion Week has done a good job in slowly expanding its horizon, including the Male Model of the Year contest that debuted in Fall 2013.  I'm guessing kid's fashion might be in the works, do I get yay or nay?

When it comes to fad, especially for those who hustle and bustle in the industry, fashion shows are often about showcasing the complete ensemble, styled to fit the occasion.  And for the best dressed fashionista of the night, my vote goes to (drum roll please) - gorgeous Miss Eva Louis.  

Eva's outfit did not just magically happen, it was a creative vision materialized by designer Natasha Duran-Lynch, winner of the Phoenix Fashion Week T-Shirt Contest 2011  and competitor for the Little Black Dress Competition 2013.  As the great Frank Sinatra once crooned, "spring has sprung" when Eva arrived in Natasha's custom designed fuchsia-lined black and white dendritic pleated skirt, paired with black lace trim shell from White House Black Market, and accented by matching fuchsia flirty rimmed open-toe heels.  Her flawless make up by Kami Tafoya of Smoke and Mirrors Studio, and one-sided pin up and Audrey Hepburn up do combination by Alex Cruz of Toni & Guy Salon in Scottsdale Fashion Square completed her look.  And that necklace from Clothes Minded gives just enough edge to demure, Miss Eva Louis.

I have 3 words to describe Eva that night:  PER - FEC - TION (and snap!)

Miss Eva Louis

Now that cured my spring fever!  'Til next time...

Get your FASH on, keep styling and make a fashion scene. Visit and LIKE Chasing Sheila on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.


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