It's probably the most dangerous runway show of Fashion Week at the Bellevue Collection -- as in, dangerous to your wallet, but friendly to a closet needing something new and fabulous. The annual Nordstrom Fall 2012 Fashion Runway Show is the most interactive runway event for the now 5 day-long fashion event that takes over downtown Bellevue every autumn. The runway showcases curated looks and pieces from various designers, but you also have the chance to "shop the show" with an ad hoc accessories and makeup boutique that's set up before and after the show. That's always the marvelous danger of attending this event, I've had more than enough moments of temptation where that McQueen scarf wouldn't seem as indulgent as getting a whole outfit, or just that one beautiful clutch from Marc Jacobs wouldn't hurt -- I don't need to heat my house when I have something stylish to keep me warm! I think the overly generous pours of wine and cocktails probably add to that mentality, but I'm all about mixing business with pleasure. Hey, it's serious business when you want to upgrade a wardrobe!
But it's not all glitz and glam, those sky-high platform heels are supporting a purpose behind this show, namely the Detlef Schrempf Foundation. They do impressive work to provide assistance and support for organizations who provide care and assistance to families throughout the Northwest. They've been with the Nordstrom runway show every year, and they highlight a different group who will be the beneficiary of the evening's proceeds. It brings more awareness to smaller organizations that may not have the resources to become a household name -- yet. This year's show supported the Bellevue Youth Theatre, a fantastic group of volunteers who mentor children of all ages towards getting involved in the performing arts, and they put on regular shows. Every child is involved, they have a part to play and I know from personal experience how wonderful this group is because I have a friends whose children have been involved for many years and the kids LOVE IT. It's absolutely changing lives and introducing the arts to those at a young age, which is about as Jaunty as it gets. Even more exciting, the proceeds from the Nordstrom show will only further along the BYT's major project of getting a new, larger theater over in the Crossroasds neighborhood. If you get a chance to see a BYT performance, please do, and it's something to definitely get your kids involved in, if they want to be a part of the arts.
Of course you're saying: what about the runway show?! Consistently a beautiful show of clothes every year, Nordstrom choose pieces that are mindful of trends, but definitely suited to fit the audience. These are wearable combinations of pieces, for both men and women, ranging from special occasion to office attire. It's a way of seeing clothing that you would normally find hanging on a rack and instead putting them on full display to reiterate that age-old saying: Just Try It On!
These certainly aren't all the outfits, but they're some of my favorites. I've got more shows to photograph and share, so keep coming back for more photos from this year's Bellevue Fashion Week!
Milly: smart, quirky and with a nod to retro styles. Very feminine, but not girly. There were gorgeous pieces with prints and intense color.
Vince: beautiful warm fall hues in simple styles. Sweater knits with leather make for a nice contrast, and even the all-leather look can be feminine.
Kelly Werstler: artful combinations of textures and patterns to build an outfit. Love the layering of contrasting prints, and colored tights peeking through a leather cut-out skirt.
Marc by Marc Jacobs: geek graduated to hipster. The pieces are darling and can be worn separately -- and no, skinny jeans and artsy glasses are not required.
Rachel Zoe: ladylike and classic with a bit of disco glam. Nicely polished looks that go from power lunch to cocktail hour.
Billy Reid: relaxed style doesn't have to just mean jeans and a t-shirt. Mixing materials and jackets galore for a nicely finished, put-together look.
Elizabeth and James: add a little rock n' roll to your wardrobe. Small details like leather gloves or studded shoulder patches on a sweater balance out a soft look.
Haute Hippie: unleash your inner rockstar goddess. Bold prints and patterns, their pieces aren't for the style-shy. Sky-high boots and heels are a must.
Haute Hippie: clearly a Magpie favorite, the evening looks range from sweet to full-on golden goddess.
Theyskens' Theory: simple, but bold. Mixing materials and textures to create contrast and wearable pieces ranging from day to night.
Tory Burch: it's fun to be a girl. Not totally stuck in a MadMen episode, but with a nod to vintage, the pieces modernize classic looks by mixing materials and a streamlined fit.
Rag and Bone: casual with a touch of quirkiness. Taking everyday outfits and having one special item, like a bold color, unique pattern, or mixing patterns on classic separates.
Diane Von Furstenberg: a stylish lady who will never be out of fashion. Feminine and fun-to-wear pieces, these are outfits that celebrate what it means to be a woman.
Diane Von Furstenberg: cocktail dresses that are never boring, and wave the Jaunty banner that sparkly, shiny things will never, ever go out of style!
Jaunty Fine Print: photography by Denise Sakaki, designers listed above