It should have been a sign that Tampa Bay would be making a huge fashion statement on one of my many trips to Florida, coming home with (surprise, surprise) fur-lined snow boots and amazingly warm and stylish winter coats at extremely low prices.
An enormous white tent was set up riverside at the historic Tampa Armature Works location. This made for a unique setup because the Armature was a place where mining equipment and machinery were repaired. It was a surreal setting as it was a fusion of glam plus industry along a lazy river on Riverview. Beautiful, shiny new automobiles by the main sponsor Audi Clearwater sparkle against the rustic industrial buildings' interior and exterior, Audi reps in polished black suit and tie, and a mix of Florida's A-List mixing with the press made for a real live magazine photo shoot. Cameras clicked, clicked, clicked and video cameras rolled all evening as the media-infested event carried on.
A hilarious karoake birthday party at some of Florida's A-list also led me to more rubbing shoulders with the designers and models. One designer who attended the birthday party is Audrey “Pat” McGhee. Her urban couture clothing rocked the house, I mean, the tent on the night of the runway show. Future brunch appointments with stylists and a fashion show at an art gallery are just a few of the upcoming events that came out of this one special week. Thanks, TBFW.
The music that was pumping during the evening was just as creative and varied as the designers' creations. From tropical to rock to a sick version of “Sweet Dreams are Made of This” (my personal favorite), Fashion Week Tampa Bay guests were well entertained. The refreshments, free gifts, and excitement kept right up with the models that were cat-walking down the runway one after the other. It was an intense evening; a cranking up the fashion notch by several levels that I'm sure will be topped during next year's event.
With two new makeovers, a bag of goodies from the event, hundreds of photos, new friends, a pile of business cards for more amazing networking, and a collection of custom made hats I have an even greater appreciation for the fashion scene. This was all possible due to Tampa Bay Fashion Week.
The only thing that I could have asked for (which I'm sure will be created soon) is an automated way to purchase the outfits that I wanted as it was brisking by. And no sooner than I can finish typing this last sentence, my new friend, owner of a modeling agency and also a programmer whose wife is a model, tells me that he has been working on creating such a device.
This year's events were a huge hit as it offered something for everyone. Whether you're more conservative or more glitzy in your fashion, whether you're there for the charity or there to grab the hottest fashion to hit the market, Tampa Bay Fashion Week offered something special. Bravo! A standing ovation to you, Tampa Bay, as you have permanently become THE perfect accessory for the Miami and NYC fashions and making yourself a permanent fixture on USA's fashion map. See you with your new title on Google Maps!
— Feature by Lena Hunt, Jetsetters Magazine Florida Correspondent.