California Celebrates Obama With an Inauguration Fashion Show

The DC-based California State Society will host a fashion show with designs from Project Runway stars. We got a sneak peek of some of the featured dresses.

By: Emily Leaman

The Los Angeles-based Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM) has partnered with DC’s California State Society to cohost a January 18 inauguration event, the Presidential Inaugural Luncheon and Fashion Show. This will be the third go-round for the event; it’s been a sellout in years past.

This year’s show, which will be held at the Ritz-Carlton, Washington D.C., will feature designs from some of the school’s most prominent alumni, including Leanne Marshall, Project Runway’s season-five winner, and Nick Verreos, a contestant on the show’s 2005 season.

Eighty outfits—both men’s and women’s—will be on display. Many of those will be from Marshall’s winning Project Runway collection; the state society won a bidding war to purchase the line. Our fingers are crossed in hopes that her gorgeous wedding gown from the last episode will make an appearance.

Fender guitars decorated by FIDM graphic design students.

One of Marshall’s dresses that we’re sure is in the show is her deep-blue, ruffle-train creation from the Diane von Furstenberg challenge, which aired in September. Marshall’s dress won that challenge, and as a result, it was picked up by von Furstenberg and has been reproduced in a limited edition.

We also ogled a gown by FIDM design student Richard Tzu Fang Chan’s Cherry Blossoms in Eden collection, a line that’s uniquely appropriate for a Washington runway. The couture gown is a splash of pinks, reds, and deep maroons, pinned together in a sequence of billowing ruffles and layers.

Another neat touch for this year’s show: A collection of Fender guitars designed by FIDM students will be marched down the runway. The collection includes trippy designs such as one acoustic guitar painted with acid-green flourishes and a paisley pattern.

Tickets to the Presidential Inaugural Luncheon and Fashion show are on sale now and can be purchased by calling Julie Hooks at 202-547-7854. Sponsorships, starting at $5,000, are available here.

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