Fashion Week returns to Kansas City

Hope Austin

A well-dressed crowd gathered around a runway in Union Station for the Friday Kansas City Fashion Week show.

Before the show, spectators were treated to a party with cocktails, electronic music and free makeovers courtesy of Ulta. There was also a giveaway for free Botox where audience members could enter by texting a phone number with their name.

The event started “fashionably late” – almost 30 minutes after it was scheduled to begin.

The fashion show started with Architexture, designed by Kansas City, Mo. locals John and Christina Moncke. The models donned hair and makeup by Xiphium Aveda Lifestyle Salon, and wore trendy formal dresses. Architexture utilized bright colors and metallics to stand out from other designers.

Next up was Nataliya Meyer’s line for her boutique, Lucia’s Sarto. Meyer is a native of the Ukraine, but now a resident of Kansas City. Her line featured evening wear for both men and women. In her designs, Meyer utilized dark neutral tones for men and lots of glitter for women. Mitsu Sato Hair Academy did hair and makeup.

The next line was Laura McGrew’s Tomboy Design studio. McGrew was described by the MC as “the best designer in Kansas City.” McGrew’s line featured preppy, comfortable clothes reminiscent of mod fashion of eras past. The clothes were white with brightly colored accents. The hair and makeup for Tomboy was done by Nevaeh Salon.

. Independence Center, the event’s sponsor, sent models on the runway who wore clothing from various chain stores found inside the mall. Models wore clothes from Macy’s, New York & Co., Boehme, the Buckle and Dillard’s. Their hair and makeup was done by the Marinello Schools of Beauty.

More remarkable still was the next designer: Kate Walz, a 17-year-old girl from Bennington, Neb., who debuted her fashion line. The young designer’s line featured formal gowns with dark, dramatic designs.

Little Shell Designs, a line by Michelle Kleinweber of Kansas City, was next. The clothes were as memorable as the presentation. The models, clad in earthy, Roman-inspired garb, came out one by one, each holding a flower. To go along with the Roman theme, each model had a Roman numeral painted on her cheek. The hair and makeup was done by stylists at Naturally Salon and Spa.

The show-stealer was Alicia Janesko’s Caftan and Resort Wear line. The Leawood-based designer decked out her models in ethereal shawls and sundresses, as well as crowns that evoked a kind of fantastic royalty. The models were accompanied by a dancing violinist. Janesko’s part of the show received enthusiastic reception from the audience, which surprised even her.

“This was my first KC Fashion Week,” said Janesko. “By the sound of things, it went really well.”

The show closed with Heidi Herrman’s line. Herman’s line featured classically feminine office-wear, alternating between bright colors and earthy neutrals. Xiphium did hair and makeup.

After the show, Janesko offered some wisdom to any would-be designers in the area.

“Don’t be afraid to take risks in your designs,” said Janesko. “Be true to yourself, and have fun.”