When you picture a rocking fashion party, Georgetown’s 7,500-square-foot Powerhouse warehouse along the C&O Canal probably isn’t what comes to mind. But when the sun went down and the neon backlights came out at Fashion District on Thursday, all doubts were removed about the sartorial power of our fair city.
At the fifth annual Fashion District, 14 local designers displayed their work, ranging from clothing to bow ties to jewelry, in an interactive showroom environment. Past events incorporated a standard runway show, but this format was a more hands-on experience, in which models stood on cubicle desks, awash in neon lighting, to showcase the art. Attendees could meet the designers, start conversations, see and touch the clothing, and shop directly off the models.
"It's an amazing crowd we get here, from the neophyte fashion lovers to the bold and beautiful glamazons," says Jordan Culberson, founder of Fashion District.
Culberson says the purpose of the evening is all about exposing Washingtonians to the talented artists living and thriving in the District. For local retailers, such as Elise Peterson of It's Vintage Darling and Sola Biu of Onyx Feather, it's a chance to meet new customers and expand business.
"I'm usually an online storefront, and I know people love to see and touch jewelry and hang out with the people who create it to help make a decision before buying," says Biu.
Partygoers sipped custom cocktails from mixologist Jon Harris as they made their way through the three-level maze of a warehouse browsing the latest collections from designers such as Hugh & Crye, Accoutre, Artaya, Kelly Tang, Ginger Root Design, aliceanna, and more.
"DC is really having a cultural renaissance and tonight shows we are adding the fashion component. We've got the museums, we've got some pretty notable institutions, but to also have the fashion side is awesome," said lifelong Washingtonian Ariana Austin.