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Local Style: Fashion Week San Diego Preview

Fashion Week San Diego is shining a spotlight on the local fashion community with runway shows and shopping parties, October 1-7.

Allison Andrews, president of APA Business Consulting, is the woman with the vision to bring a fashion week to San Diego.

You may remember the inaugural FWSD in 2008; an ambitious event that didn’t quite live up to big city standards. After a four year hiatus, Andrews is returning to the runway with a bigger and better event. FWSD 2012 boasts more structure for the audience and more support for the designers, including an interactive hi-tech voting system and a career-boosting grand prize.

From New York, to London, Milan and Paris, the world’s most respected designers travel the globe each fall to present new spring fashions. Andrews is not looking to compete with Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week by bringing in big names like Carolina Herrera, Zac Posen, Diane Von Furstenberg and Michael Kors; rather, she is starting small and creating a local platform fit for showcasing San Diego designers.

“The big picture for Fashion Week San Diego is to continue to grow the event and create awareness within the fashion industry of San Diego fashion,” Andrews shares. “Our other goal is to give opportunities for emerging fashion designers to launch their careers and plug into a large, quality production. With the growth of FWSD comes the growth of the fashion community in San Diego."

Twelve San Diego designers have been working hard to craft Spring 2013 collections for the main FWSD runway event taking place Saturday at the Hard Rock Hotel. Participating designers include Andre Soriano (artistic high-fashion with old Hollywood inspiration), Jessica Faulkner (contemporary, practical womenswear), Erin Fader Jewelry Designs (craftsman jewelry made with up-cycling vintage materials), and the FWSD veteran Stacie May (versatile, expressive womenswear), among others.

Pictured Left: FWSD designer nOia Collection

What stand-out designers should we look for on the runway? “All of them! The talent this year is incredible,” beams a passionate Andrews. “I have spent the last nine months getting to know these designers and have watched them develop their collections. They are each unique and there is something for everyone from evening gowns and cocktail dresses to casual ready to wear pieces and swimwear. We even have two accessories designers and a plus size designer.”

But it’s really your opinion that matters most. An exciting new addition to FWSD is a tech-driven live audience vote during the runway show. “We added the Winning Designer Business Package to help the designer take the momentum of Fashion Week San Diego and grow their careers into a successful business,” Andrews explains. “The audience will decide who the winning designer is by voting during the Runway Shows through the Fashion Week San Diego App.”

You can help your favorite designer get his or her fashion line off the ground by casting your vote on Saturday. The Winning Designer Business Package includes cash prize money and a Wells Fargo Bank bond, a logo design from Phoebe Street Creative, 50 hours of strategic marketing with APA Business Consulting, a fashion photo shoot with Melissa Au of Dandelion Dreams Photography, a press release by Olive PR and more.

Pictured Above: FWSD designers Andre Soriano and Kenneth Barlis

2012 Fashion Week San Diego Schedule

Monday, Oct. 1

Private opening night party at Roppongi, 6pm

Tuesday, Oct. 2

Meet & Greet Mixer with FWSD Designers at Roppongi, 6pm

Wednesday, Oct. 3

The Art and Beauty of Fashion at W San Diego Hotel, 6pm

Expect: Unveiling of original art piece designed RAW: natural born artists, inspired by local fashion.

Thursday, Oct. 4

Spotlight: San Diego Style at Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, 6:30pm

Expect: Interactive discussion with fashion industry experts Brian Hawkins, JoAnn Jack, and Norm Zwail.

Friday, Oct. 5

First Preview of Collections at Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, 6pm

Expect: Designers will reveal one piece from the FWSD collections for VIP ticket holders.

Saturday, Oct. 6

FWSD Runway Shows & After Party at Hard Rock Hotel San Diego, 6pm

Expect: Designers will showcase FWSD collections on the runway. The audience will rate the collections, and the designer with the highest score will win the FWSD Business Package to help launch their line.

Sunday, Oct. 7

FWSD Trunk Show at Hard Rock Hotel San Diego, 11am – 2pm

Expect: Shop the full FWSD collections straight from the runway, and check out more booths from local boutiques and beauty companies. The FWSD winning designer will be announced at the event.

FWSD Details: VIP tickets are sold out. General admission three-day tickets are $65, and are expected to sell out soon. For more event information and current ticket updates, visit

All 2012 FWSD designer photos by Gail Bowman



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