I attended the March 2012 edition of Project Ethos because I was dying to finally see my friend- Melissa Velia’s collection roll down the runway. It was once again held at the Avalon in Hollywood and featured numerous designers and boasted several artists that showcased their work during the pre-fashion show reception. During the reception, I mingled with fellow bloggers and just took in the scene, while trays of yummy bite-size desserts were being passed around. The fashion show was divided in half between ten designers, with a concert by Hyper Crush in the middle. The first group to showcase their designs on the catwalk were: Ermelinda Manos, Luica Couture, Boditecture and Danielle Pettee. First up to show was the line- Luica Couture. The designers Luis Mendoza and Yesica Medina presented mainly womens fashion and two mens looks. I thought the deconstructed blazer and tailvest (think Edwardian tailcoat) were pretty ingenious. I had recently viewed Ermelinda’s last collection at a previous Project Ethos event and was impressed at the attention to detail and fluidity of the line. This time, for Fall 2012, she showed a more mature line, (aside from her usual short, flirty and fun aesthetic) that women of all ages can wear and feel confidant. She showed several fun dresses, from a sheer lacy number that would be a great layering piece to the extravagant finale dresses consisting of feathers and silk chiffons. According to Ermelinda, “This collection is for a woman that loves to stand out but is yet modest. Very high fashion forward women that crave something different, that no one else will have to the party/event. The entire collection is true couture. Everything is hand made. From the pattern, to drape, cut, sew and seam.” Prices for the collection start at $400. Check out Ermelinda’s website, here. Next up was avant garde label-JaJo Couture. Designer Janean Johnson showcased her “Ravens & Revenge” collection, inspired by a mix of wearable goth, grunge and punk influences. My favorite pieces from the collection were the Tartan-esque suit with fascinator and the strapless deep v-neck mermaid dress with a tiered ruffle skirt. For more information on JaJo Couture, go to the website. This next brand was definitely the highlight of the evening- Boditecture. This line answers the problem that we women face on almost a daily basis- “I have several events throughout the day, but don’t want to wear the same thing all the time…” Well, my friends, your prayers have been answered! Boditecture offers a chic yet simple line of convertible dresses. Wouldn’t you know, the designer- Wen Guo, had recently quit her job in architecture (seeing the resemblance to the concept and brand name) and is now working full-time for her brand, since last September. Wen had me at the first look! I can’t wait to see more from the brand. Go here for more information. The last line to show in the first group was Danielle Pettee. Her collection was fun, bright, lady-like and whimsical. All her dresses are made-to-order, using recycled vintage fabrics and are available in all sizes. Go to her website for more information and special order your Danielle Pettee dress! During the break in between the runway shows, we were treated to a concert by LA-based Hyper Crush. The house rocked it out to their electro-meets-pop-meets-hip hop music. For bookings and more info, go here. The last group of fashion stars to hit the stage were: Melissa Velia, Edita Collection, G.Marie, FURIO and GLAUDI. The lights dimmed and a young hip-hop dancer named Joanna Baca took center stage in the opening of the Melissa Velia show. This got the audience extremely pumped for the actual fashion show that immediately followed. What started as a hobby, Melissa enjoyed designing and making clothes for her Barbies back when she was seven. From then on, her drive and passion for fashion has evolved. She launched her brand in 2010 at a Project Ethos event. During this event, she showcased her Spring/Summer 2012 (with a hint of Fall as well) that was an edgy ‘circus’ of beautiful striped prints (just the right amount of stripe width) and florals in chiffons. I also was very proud to have worn one of her dresses during the event. I wore the “Once Upon a Gown“- a black, strapless, long maxi princess dress with loads of tulle and a corseted bodice. Melissa is also well-known for her fun tassel earrings that are available in a variety of sizes and colors. For more information on Melissa Velia, check out her website. The next collection that followed was Edita Collection. This FIDM alum recently launched her label in 2011 and showcased her Fall/Winter 2012 collection during this event. I loved the simplicity of the short dresses, made from either silk or knit. Even though the design was simple and form-fitting, there was always an intriguing peep of sexiness usually from the backs of the dresses; from either the cute button trim or a deep back v, etc. For more information on Edita Collection, please go here. The next collection of the evening is G. Marie by Regina Marie Woods. Her Fall/Winter 2012 collection included organic and Vegan separates. My faves include a silk color blocked jacket with Vegan leather and the two finale dresses with rosette detailing and drape. This next line- FURIO- was inspired by Cambodia, designed in France and made in America. I really enjoyed the opening story by designer Catherine Furio, regarding her experiences in Cambodia… The twenty-year-old girl who wouldn’t sell Catherine the red and pink tapestry scarf because she didn’t want to lose the conversations the two shared. “I was taken aback and realized at that moment that the backbone of FURIO Apparel had to cater to the need of relationships, the investment of people…and ultimately to use fashion as a platform to share in the primary human experience.” So, the collection that had been dreamed up under her mosquito net, hit the stage on the eve of March 13th. It was a beautiful collection, with colorful and artistic separates constructed from raw silk. The collection ranges from $200-2,000. For more information, please go to their website. The evening concluded with the line- GLAUDI by Johana Hernandez. Can someone say “SEQUINS”!? And myself, being obsessed with sequins (mainly of the vintage kind), I found some of that 80s influence in some of the bright sequin dresses. Why oh why don’t I see more of her designs on the red carpet? They are unique and when the wearer walked into a crowded room, she is she to turn heads in GLAUDI Collection! Hear more about Johana’s humble beginnings that got her to where she is today and view her collections here.
After the show, followed an LAFW afterparty and encore fashion show from FURIO.
Way to go Project Ethos team!