by MIKE CHAIKEN
The fashion world of Connecticut gets another shot at strutting its stuff this month as Sound Fashion Week CT returns for a second season.
Locations from Bridgeport to East Hartford have been tapped for the week-long list of activities.
Travis Bivans, who helped organize the event, said the event is intended to give the Nutmeg State fashion community an opportunity to shine.
Fashion in Connecticut, said Bivans, is “here and thriving.”
“The fashion businesses (of Connecticut) just need a platform to elevate and align them with the rest of the nation/world,” said Bivans. “The businesses should and need to be seen by the rest of the state as well. Sometimes that can be very difficult due to the lack of resources or lack of connection to each other in general.”
The Connecticut native said, “My goal is to make people aware that Sound of Fashion Week CT is the new fashion week that will be representing Connecticut. The Fashion Council within is created and ran by businesses and individuals with 20-plus years of combined experience in the business of fashion and entertainment. They are also residents who were born and raised in Connecticut and have a deep understanding of the shifting culture over the years. Some even have multi-state or different culture/country experiences to add to the artistic and business diversity. (This helps create) a totally unique business entity in Connecticut.”
Last October was the first time Sound of Fashion CT was held. But Bivans said it was launched in an atypical moment in fashion and the world.
“Statewide mandates (regarding COVID-19) were still a thing,” said Bivans. “We had to do events at half capacity while introducing a brand new fashion platform.”
“This year is our first year without mandates and it is giving us first year jitters as well,” said Bivans. “It has been a very stressful, enlightening and impactful journey.”
But, Bivans said, plans are falling into place for a successful year two. “The people, artist and fashion community are all ready for a fashion week.”
As part of its sophomore year, Bivans said some evolution has been taking place with Sound of Fashion CT. “We have decided to invest deeper into the fashion and arts sector of Connecticut. Be prepared to see some micro-instillations in the spring. We will partner with different sources around the state to bring together different platforms in hopes of creating a tangible arts infrastructure for Connecticut.”
One of the new events for year two is a fashion show featuring teen models and teen creatives.
“Connecticut teens have been lost in the shuffle in my eyes,” said Bivans. “They have not had the opportunity to shine in the fashion and modeling arenas ever.”
“I saw the depths of (local teens) talent last year when Julianna Armatino and Enyeliz Moreno partnered together to support the fashion week with makeup (before the shows) at the ages of 13 and 14,” said Bivans. “We wanted to be open to every any talented artist, but I had no idea how gifted these two were.”
That led to a brainstorming idea, said Bivans. “I created the concept of us doing a teen fashion show… This show not only exhibits teens on the run, they will also be given the opportunity to run it under the supervision of fashion professionals. We will be creating a fashion mentor program out of the week.”
Bivans said he hopes the teen show will blossom into something special for year three of Sound of Fashion CT. “We have something really special in store.”
For this year’s show, Bivans said designers will come from beyond just Connecticut. He said designers from Rhode Island, Georgia, California and Texas will be participating alongside the Connecticut contingent. There are 50-60 designers expected.
“Our friends are supporting this fashion week heavily,” said Bivans. “They see the potential in Connecticut.”
The schedule for Sound of Fashion CT is:
Sunday, Oct. 16: The All State Teen Fashion Show 6-10 p.m. at the Connecticut Science Center, 250 Columbus Boulevard, Hartford.
Monday, Oct. 17: Fashion Show Closet in Hartford at 6 p.m. This will be a streamed event from Hartford on Facebook and Instagram.
Tuesday, Oct, 18: From 5-10 p.m., photographers Keith Claytor, Elijah Hooker and Larianne Tide will partner together on providing discounted photographs for people needing images at Studio52 , 52 North Main St., Middletown.
Wednesday, Oct. 19, doors open at 8 p.m., event starts at 9 p.m.: G Money will host “Producer Verzuz” for local Connecticut music producers to exhibit their works and network with each other at Malibu Sports Bar and Lounge, 808 Silver Lane, East Hartford.
Thursday, Oct. 20: There will be two fashion shows. “All of the Lights” will be taking place at Malibu in East Hartford at 3 p.m. Colorway will take place 7-10 p.m. at “Peacock Alley,” 1042 Main St., Bridgeport.
Friday, Oct. 21 from 5-10 p.m. “Extravaganza,” a LGBTQIA inclusive platform will highlight the art and love of the community with Vogue Battles and a fashion show at the Bond Ballroom, 338 Asylum Ave., Hartford.
Saturday, Oct. 22 from 5-10 p.m.: Models will walk the vintage Arcade Mall, 993 Main St., Bridgeport.
Tickets can be purchased on www.sofwct.com
Bivans said the sponsors for this year’s events are Yoche Cosmetics and Glossy Diva Cosmetics as well as Dashaun Russell, Kristen Lindsey and Jacquelyn Rivera.
“Thank you to all the designers, models and artists who are willing to grow with us as we build this fashion week,” said Bivans.