Omaha Fashion Week, which begins Monday, will feature six nights of fashion created by 39 designers, who will show around 350 looks worn by over 100 models.
Add stylists, hair and make-up artists, photographers and volunteers, and the number of people actually participating in Omaha Fashion Week will approach 1,000, said producer Brook Hudson.
She expects another 4,000 people — including clothing buyers and manufacturers — to show up to watch.
Since the first Omaha Fashion Week in 2008, the event has steadily grown, said Hudson, who became OWF producer in the spring of 2011. As interest and participation in the event has climbed, so too has the quality of designers and garments that make the cut.
This year, for the first time, OFW applicants pitched their ideas to a selection panel, who evaluated them based on both vision and ability, Hudson said. After the 39 participating designers were selected, they continued to check-in with panel members periodically, who offered feedback on the designers' ideas and execution.
The combination of more rigorous entry guidelines and the access to mentors led to a noticeable improvement in the caliber of the garments, Hudson said.
“I really think that the quality is improving so much,” she said “(Designers) have taken the advice and guidance and incorporated it into their work. It's just tremendous.”
JLynn Hausmann is among those who noticed OFW's growth. After looking into launching her premium denim line, JHaus, at several Midwest fashion weeks she decided to add Omaha's.
“We looked into Chicago and Kansas City, and Omaha has by far the largest following,” said Hausmann, a native of Butte, Neb., (she now lives in Los Angeles) who admits she is perhaps a bit biased toward her home state.
Hausmann will show her denim line, which includes both jeans and evening wear, on Friday and Saturday nights.
The shows kick off Monday with children's wear. Avant garde garmets will be shown Tuesday night, followed by bridal and swimwear on Wednesday; evening wear on Thursday; daywear on Friday; and a grand finale show featuring the strongest designs of the week on Saturday.
Weeknight shows will be held at Kaneko, 1111 Jones St. Saturday's finale will be outside on Jones Street between Ninth and 10th Streets. All shows begin at 8 p.m. Tickets are available online at www.omahafashionweek.com.
Contact the writer: 402-444-1052, email@example.com