The African Fashion Show

The African Fashion Show Recap
By Daniel Saun | Fashion Denver Intern

African Fashion Show
Photo by Dante | Canto X Images / www.

Authenticity is a term that is used copious amounts of times within the fashion industry. However, is there truly authenticity within the fashion industry today? With consumers eating up fast fashion like it’s their last meal and those that have created womenswear and menswear into a commodity, it is truly hard to find a collection that is genuine. At the African Fashion Show Saturday night, I had the pleasure of experiencing fashion that is as authentic as it can be.

Tribal patterns, vibrant colors, traditional music, and most importantly; culture. Culture is what makes fashion unique and its people are the heart of that culture. From the few fashion shows that I have attended, the African Fashion Show was the liveliest and the most charismatic.

African Fashion Show
Photo by Dante | Canto X Images / www.

As the models walked down the runway representing and owning the native threads from different countries all over Africa including: Rwanda, Uganda, Nigeria, etc., there was an incredible sense of heart and passion that included the audience. In a way, this was more than a fashion show. This was a representation. A representation of how influential and important all cultures from Africa are. This representation also became educational. The dropback for the center stage and the patterns on all the clothing turned into a realization. I never noticed it, but some of my favorite patterns from designers such as Burberry Prorsum and Junya Watanabe all took influence from very traditional African ornaments.  

African Fashion Show
Photo by Dante | Canto X Images / www.

With such monumental motifs that most of the heaviest players in fashion are continuously paying homage to Africa for her designs, it is a cause for celebration and a celebration it became. As the fashion show came to a close, a guest singer sang and the audience danced, sung a long and some even rose from their seats. The atmosphere was uplifting with a great sense of community. Traditional dancing accompanied by the drums carried the spirit and the enthusiasm of the culture all the way to the end.


According to Davie, a gospel reggae singer from Uganda said, “this fashion show was classic and true to the heart of Africa and her people.”
Check out My African Roots FB for more pictures!

Part 2 of pictures

Special Advance Screening of The Neon Demon

Special Advance Screening of The Neon Demon
Tuesday, June 21st 7pm
Alamo Drafthouse Littleton
7301 S. Santa Fe Drive
Littleton, CO 80120

Fashion Denver friends! You are cordially invited to a special advance screening of The Neon Demon!

When aspiring model Jesse moves to Los Angeles, her youth and vitality are devoured by a group of beauty-obsessed women who will use any means necessary to get what she has in The Neon Demon, the new horror thriller from Nicolas Winding Refn.

The Neon Demon stars Elle Fanning (Maleficent, Super 8), Jena Malone (Inherent Vice, The Hunger Games series), Bella Heathcote (Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Dark Shadows), Abbey Lee (Gods of Egypt, Max Max: Fury Road), Karl Glusman (Love, Stonewall), Keanu Reeves (John Wick, The Matrix series), Christina Hendricks (“Mad Men,” Drive), Desmond Harrington (“Dexter,” The Dark Knight Rises), Alessandro Nivola (A Most Violent Year, American Hustle), and Charles Baker (“Breaking Bad,” Wild).

CLICK HERE >> to download your admit-two pass. (While supplies last, passes admit up to 2. Passes do not guarantee admission as theater is overbooked). ARRIVE EARLY for ticket exchange. #TheNeonDemon in theaters June 24th 

A trip with the Urban Angels

We are honored to work with The Urban Angels on their amazing dress drive! We delivered 55 dresses that were handmade by these amazing women! We stopped by to check out The Action Center and all the amazing ways they serve those in need in the Jefferson County area.

It takes at least 80 volunteers daily to run this facility. Places like #Walmart, #WholeFoods, #TraderJoes, and #Sprouts donate to The Action Center so families can get healthy food, clothes, and household items.

Please donate! They are in need of children’s clothing and men’s clothing! 

Fashion Camp May Edition Photobooth Recap

We had such a wonderful fashion camp last month! One of the fun components of our last fashion camp was working with Ilya Kushnir and his company ‪#‎BoothYa‬! C.Stephan of 4:42 Studios conceptualized the idea to have the campers take photos of themselves in the photobooth and then trace their photo so they could design their fashion piece onto their sketch. Fun ensued throughout the day! A HUGE thank you to non for your generous donation in making this idea happen!


Our next fashion camp is happening Saturday July 23rd! Click for details!

Sizzlin’ 6 questions with Splash Designer Denise Dailey

Denise Dailey, brains behind Prompt Flare Designs and OCH Couture will be joining us at SPLASH, our summer fashion market powered by 303 Magazine! Join us June 26th for an afternoon of fashion fun by the pool!

 Denise DaileyWhat were your obsessions growing up?

Color! I would color coordinate everything about my clothes and accessories… I loved matching everything together. I also loved transforming my jacket into my personalized style by applying studs and jewels and wearing my aunt’s brooches .

How did fashion become the symbol for your creative expression?

As a portrait sculpture artist, adding colorful flowers for the hair naturally evolved into wearable art- Hair made from fabric, tulle, ribbon and other materials made for a runway statement maker. And is still evolving with our belts,purses and earrings.

Do you see a stylistic connection between the things you do in your daily life that is reflected into your collections? 

Definitely! I see inspiration for styles in plants, bushes, flowers and trees. I see humorous t-shirts made from life’s moments. I love looking at purses and the way women use them. I get inspired thinking about ways to design and add better functionality.

Denise Dailey

What is your research process like before starting a collection?

I like looking at what the runways are doing and what people are wearing – I draw inspiration from everyone. Generally once an idea strikes, I hurriedly get it onto paper. I show it to my family, friends and team to gauge their response. I’ll look to see what’s already out there and if someone’s already running with it… I check Pinterest, magazines, google and social media and if it seems like there’s a need, I go with it.

How has fashion impacted you? 

I love the freedom of expression. Fashion has given me validation to be a little out of the box, which excites me to create. I am constantly stimulated with ideas.


What is your opinion on the fashion scene in Denver from a designers perspective?

Being a Denver native, I have to say that we were always really cool with our own different style. Then it kind of petered out to more of a coastal thing to be fashionable. In 2011, I would have said that I felt I had to be coastal. Today, I feel the Denver scene is young and becoming more and more fashion-forward with all the different cultures and personalities. It reminds me of old expressive times of the late 70’s and 80’s. I feel Denver’s fashion industry is taking off in a big way and this is the place to be for a designer.

Denise Dailey

Sizzlin’ 6 Questions with our Splash Designer Blackberry Maverick

Interview with Leslie Kinson of Blackberry Maverick, a featured designer at our summer fashion market Splash, happening Sunday, June 26th!

Blackberry MaverickWhat were your obsessions growing up? 

I was obsessed with exploring the outdoors (I grew up on a farm) as well as all kinds of art, from gardening to acrylics, to watercolor, to sculpture, to sketching and ultimately making clothing.

How did fashion become the symbol for your creative expression?

My town growing up was a tiny farm town in Vermont where my high school class had only 92 students from the entire county. Fashion for me was a was to stand out and express my individuality in a atmosphere with such a lack of diversity. At home it allowed me to spend time with my mother, learning all of her skills and at school it allowed me to get out of the boring classes in order to do creative projects instead.

Do you see a stylistic connection between the things you do in your daily life that is reflected into your collections?

Absolutely. I love being on the forefront of everything and I love to be noticed! Whether through my personality as a waitress, the way I decorate my home and the environment I create for my friends and industry co workers, to the restaurants I frequent and the food and drinks I consume. I am drawn color and texture in everything and always strive to be that girl that people look at and want to know.

What is your research process like before starting a collection?

Blackberry MaverickI always design with the BMAV fearless female in mind, “You are smart, savvy, confident…and emerging as a woman in the world with a strong sense of self. Whether you are 20 or 40 You want to be able to express who you are through the clothing that you choose to wear. To, “Be Noticed” is a state of mind that will inspire our women to radiate their inner light. We want you to embody the bold, sensational woman who is electrified by being the center of attention” 

Then, I research a few things simultaneously in order to come to an initial collection. Fabric type, colors/testures/prints and silhouettes and design elements I gravitate towards that are fresh and exciting and inspire me to design around them as well as speak to the woman I am designing for. 

From there, I make things! I am untraditional in the sense that I don’t make a mood board, then sketch, then draft patterns etc. I get fabrics I want and sketch a few design elements and from there I start draping in the actual fabrics and build on a dress form. I won’t build whole pieces, just elements, maybe work out the drape of a pant leg, or the structure of a shoulder. Then from there I figure out which silhouettes, which design elements and which fabrics will go with what and start building a cohesive collection around the story I am trying to tell. 

Blackberry Maverick

How has fashion impacted you?

Fashion is my life really. It exudes from me and consumes me. I have tried for many reasons to give it up at different stages in my life but I always end of coming back to it. It was four years ago now that I started Blackberry Maverick and I devote every ounce of my energy to growing and developing my brand and honing in my ability to create pieces that truly speak to the BMAV woman.

Blackberry Maverick

What is your opinion on the fashion scene in Denver from a designers perspective?

I am excited about the growth I have seen over the past 10 years and feel that we are carving out a legitimate name for ourselves. It is fantastic to be able to manufacture locally and to have customers who support local manufacturing and sustainable fabrics. It is also wonderful to be able to work with eager individuals making names for themselves in the design arena as well as in photography, modeling, hair and makeup.


Anthomania Fashion Show

13442609_10153890197327585_7399049042330129973_oThe summer fashion season certainly kicked off this past weekend at the Anthomania Fashion Show, presented by Studio Colfax. This family run artisan boutique on Colfax Avenue put on a wonderful fashion show in their very own courtyard in the back of the store.

The show featured local designers such  Minus the Dart,  Symantha Perrera,  and PUPIL Clothing. Hair was done by Jade Gordons Onsixth, and makeup by Cynthia Delgado. With yummy food provided by Extreme Pizza – Denver, and even iced tea by RL Linden & Co.

Designer: FACE Photo by: Lynn Nguyen

The show began with models emerging from the back exit out of the store on to a brick walk way which wrapped around the entire courtyard and made for a great runway. Guests were seated all along the courtyard and given perfect little wooden fans to keep cool during the hot summer night. While it was definitely warm out, the weather was certainly not the only thing hot about the evening. Kicking off the show, we saw designs from FACE aka Symantha Perra, one in particular was a bright orange and red floral dress and this dress was hot to say the least. Her designs got me feelin’ some type of way for fashion this summer season! Next we saw designs from pupil and Minus the Dart. With leggings such as “Miente Libre Leggings” and “Opius Wars Leggings” from pupil and sleek black poncho’s from Minus the Dart, topped with jewelry from Canned Good, the combined look was powerful and definitely made a statement.

From Studio Colfax's Facebook Page
Minus the Dart ended the show with a variety of beautiful top and skirt pairings. She also featured a casual striped  shirt dress that was sold right off the runway! If you’re looking to spice up your summer wardrobe or you’re just in need of a couple timeless pieces, you’re sure to find something provided by one of if not all of these designers!

The show concluded just in time for a typical late afternoon Denver summer shower and I was in serious need of one of Minus the Dart’s awesome poncho’s! For more pictures from the evening visit our Facebook page here. Studio Colfax is located at 2418 E Colfax Ave, Denver, Colorado 80206. The boutique features not just clothing but also jewelry, shoes, purses, and many other goodies not to be missed!



Wrap up for Matthew Morris 10 Year celebration

By Daniel Saun | Fashion Denver Summer Intern

Amazing. Even the honorable Mr. Morris could not find another word to describe the artistry and the expertise that he and his team have been able to achieve over the decade. His metallic gold Jeremy Scott Adidas wings sneakers graced the runway as he effortlessly exuded an energy that filled the ballroom. This was an event that not only hailed the past 10 years of Matthew Morris, but also to new beginnings.

Hairstyles over the past decade. Photo by Lynn Nguyen

The eager guests that attended were treated to an array of eye candy that foreshadowed the occasion and the phenomenal spectacles they would witness. As the night progressed and with everyone taking full advantage of the open bar, courtesy of those that donated, it was time for the main show.

The avant-garde of Colorado gathered into their seats surrounding the X shaped runway that teased them as L’Erin and Marvin, parterns along side Matthew Morris, spoke and were reminiscent of days past that were part of the fundamental building blocks that shaped what the Matthew Morris Salon has become.

Photo by Lynn Nyguyen
Photo by Lynn Nguyen.  L’Erin, Marvin and Matthew

However, it would not be a Matthew Morris event without a just cause. This year, the wonderful team decided to help defeat Breast Cancer and to help promote early detection awareness among women. The brave Erin Monroe spoke about her experience as a Breast Cancer survivor and how important it is for  women to realize how impactful Breast Cancer is. Money was graciously donated as spirits were uplifted as guests thought about the women in their lives that, someday, might be diagnosed.

Gold and black. Photo by Lynn Nguyen

Black, gold, chic, sexy and fierce: The Blonds. A New York household that has accumulated a dynamic cult following over the past 8 years. This was the first time the duo at The Blonds put their collection confidently into someone else’s hands. The Matthew Morris Vision and The Blonds is a match made in heaven and they did not disappoint. Grimey dubstep, trap, edm and rap music set the mood as the models strutted down the runway. As you would expect, it’s hard to put the collection into words.

Photo by Lynn Nguyen
Photo by Lynn Nguyen
Photo by Lynn Nguyen

Congratulations are due to the entire Matthew Morris team for a wonderful 10 years in Denver. We look forward to every minute of the years to come. 

Next up for the Matthew Morris team! L’Erin was suprised by the gift of part ownership of the company and they are opening up a new salon in DTC!

Call out for designers: Fashion Denver Summer Market by the Pool

Sunday, June 26th from 3-7pm
Riviera at the Breakers
9099 E Mississippi Ave
Denver, CO 80247

The Breakers present the Fashion Denver Poolside Market powered by 303 Magazine! Join the Fashion Denver crew for a memorable summer fun fashion market by the pool! SPLASH will feature a handful of local Colorado fashion businesses with a mini fashion show presentation poolside!

Fashion Denver pool side market
The Riviera at the Breakers last summer. Photo by @bshigley

This day of fashion fun is designed for fashion lovers and family as we celebrate summer fun. Designers will have approximately a 10×10 space around the pool and on the patio at the Riviera, to set up their designs and sell throughout the day.  Designers keep all sales that they make and are responsible for sales tax.

This event will be marketed to local media and blogs as well as posters and flyers distributed throughout the city.

Fill out this application and once your application is received, we will get back to you with approval and send you confirmation information soon after.



Two Denver women make a difference dress by dress

Showers of Blessings Dress Drive
Sunday, June 12th noon-3pm
Studio Salon 1135 Bannock Street

Two Denver women make a difference locally and internationally, dress by dress

UrbanAngelsDenver, CO (June 1st, 2016)-Showers of Blessings, the 2nd annual dress drive for Haiti and the Jeffco Action Center, takes place Sunday, June 12th 2016 from noon-3pm atStudio Salon located at 1135 Bannock Street. Peggy Kastning and Mary Martinez, brains behind the Urban Angels, have been serving the homeless community around Denver and spreading positivity and light. After seeing a program about the needs in Haiti, they both wanted to expand their positivity and hope.  A major realization occurred, they could both, help by making dresses for girls in Haiti, and continue to help families locally.

“It’s exciting to know that each one of us can make a difference in the world. With our love of sewing and our hearts for humanity, we can combine these two passions and help those less fortunate.” says Peggy Kastning of the Urban Angels.

The 2nd annual dress drive will work in 2 ways. Attendees that come to this free event can purchase a dress for the little girl in their life for a suggested donation of $25.00. Or attendees can purchase a dress in their name that will be donated to a little girl at the Jeffco Action Center or in Haiti. 100% of the donations will go directly to Love A Child, Inc. a 501(c)(3) non-profit humanitarian organization, serving the needs of children in Haiti. The dress drive will feature arunway show featuring kids in the community, light snacks and a chance to win gift certificates to pedicures, style & blow dry, restaurants, or a dress of choice.


“Hope and love are infused into these dresses and we will never know the full impact of the gift that’s been given,” says Mary Martinez of the Urban Angels.

Between Peggy and Mary, over 100 dresses have been handmade using bright cheery colors and accents that make any little girl smile.

“I have never seen such creative dresses before and knowing that two women are making these dresses in their spare time and donating 100% to charity, is incredible. The design captured my attention and the charity aspect made it a no-brainer.” Says Jeremy Klammer founder of GoFit Media.

“These dresses are perfect for my two nieces!  Knowing that I was able to help families in Haiti makes this purchase even more meaningful.” says Margaret Williams who purchased the dresses at Fashion Denver’s office in Green Spaces.

Showers of Blessings is free and open to the public.

The Urban Angels are two gals on a mission to do good, transform lives, and create happiness in the world. Through their annual dress drives and adventures to Haiti, they want to spread sunshine where they can and make this world a better place.

For more information visit

Contact Peggy Kastning at or call 303-808-3059. 

Supporting Colorado designers since 2004 through production of fashion markets, fashion shows, and business development

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