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Fashion Show for Scholarships

Every single seat was filled at the Preston Bradley Hall inside the Chicago Cultural Center with some people even standing among the over 350 guests. They were there to witness a fashion show with a mixture of couture fashion and everyday wear.

The Chicago Fashion Foundation’s 5th Annual Scholarship Award Benefit for Chicago area students majoring in fashion related studies was held on March 7. The Chicago Fashion Foundation, a 501 (3)C non-profit organization, gave three scholarships during the event to the top three designers in the fashion show voted on by a panel of judges.

Rosalind Brumant, The Chicago Fashion Foundation Scholarship Chair, said the theme of this year was Street Style: Chicago Fashion Through Chicago Communities. The name of the event was “Future of Chicago Fashion.”

“Every year we have a different theme,” said Brumant, 38. “ [This year] the designer’s inspiration comes from a different part of the city. Chicago is sort of like a melting pot.”

Brumant played a crucial role in the creating of this annual event. This was the second time she has worked on this fashion show.

“I help secure the place, secure vendors that we work with,” said Brumant. “I also work with local designers, as well as different companies to get donations for our silent auction. We started planning this last September, so it’s been several months to secure everything to make sure that we have the right location and something that was easy to get to, but at the same time could have the runway affect for our fashion show side of things and hold enough people.”

Brumant mingled among guests during the silent auction making everyone feel welcome. The auction may have been silent, but the happenings around it were anything but quiet.Guests enjoyed the complimentary drinks that came from purchasing a ticket and there was even a table of alcoholic cupcakes from the Chicago company Guilty Pleasurez and waiters that came around with trays of food to nibble on.

The judges were made up of notable people in Chicago. The judges were Candace Jordan, Catie Keogh, Peach Carr, Andrea Schwartz, Diego Rocha, and Erikka Wang. Peach Carr, design contestant from the show Project Runaway and host of this event last year, was nothing but smiles.

“It was exciting judging them because I have been judged before,” said Carr, 51. “It was nice being able to put them at ease. The girl that won had great construction. She was my number one pick.”

The top three designs were influenced by the communities of Ukranian Village, Hyde Park, and Beverly. The top three designers were Elena Bobysheva of Columbia College Chicago, Michelle Castellano of School of The Art Institute, and Raven Norman of Illinois Institute of Art.

Aaliyah Sanchez, a high school student and model for Elizabeth Smith Fashions by Latonya Williams, said it was a fashion show where one could find something to wear even if they weren’t a famous person.

“It looked like things you could actually wear,” said Sanchez, 17. “[The designs] were not something that you see and only a celebrity could wear it. They really connect to the crowd. People who a live a regular life can wear the designs.”

The host of this years event was Corri McFadden, owner of EDROP-OFF and star of the upcoming VHI reality show “House of Consignment.”

“This event keeps the fashion of the city going,” said McFadden, 29, as the show began. “It’s so important.”


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