Omaha Fashion Week paid tribute to all things natural and light this fall, with runway looks that were airy, free, and fierce. Designers showed off their creations, inspired by events affecting the lives of many Omahans, such as the Nebraska floods.
Omaha Fashion Week kicked off Sunday afternoon, August 18th, with The Aisle—a premier bridal showcase inspired by weddings, fashion, and grace.
The first round of the show featured designs from Noa Brides, Denise Ervin Designs, and Black Tie White Satin paired with Tip Top Tux. Livi’s Designs Bridal, Dream Dress Express and Tip Top Tux, and Only By Faith took the stage for the second round, with Ellynne Bridal, Dillards and Tip Top Tux, and Hannah Caroline Couture closing the show. Styles ranged from vintage to edgy and included everything in between.
The excitement didn’t stop just because of Monday. The Empire Room hosted a cocktail reception honoring OFW Beauty Alliance Director, Somer Krueger, who presented “Beauty is a Community.” The event also partnered with Surface Hair to collect gently used hair care products for those in need at Omaha’s Lydia House.
Tuesday’s Emerging Designer showcase was centered around the theme, Terra (“earth” in Latin). The evening’s designs focused on sustainability, earth-tones, and warmth all around.
The Omaha Fashion Campers opened the show with style, and strut, showing off designs created during this year’s Omaha Fashion Camp. This first set continued with the luxurious accessories of Malek R., glamorous styles of Karma LiLoLa, powerful nature of A.N.N. Designs, and timelessness of Little Jo Designs.
The night finished with RoninScar’s wild collection inspired by mythical creatures, Indigomaha’s ode to save the planet, Anna Naomi’s vintage vibes, and Lauren Glowacki Designs throwback to ’90s streetwear.
The Latin word for “air” is Aura, which was also the theme for this show. As guests entered the Omaha Design Center, many dressed the part with flowing styles and delicate colors.
Headliner Hannah Jensen started the show with fun and light, followed by Anna Leigh’s powerful collection focusing on the effects of smoking to the lungs. MAANG by Yasi Fayal was down-to-earth and inspired by the Middle East’s beauty. Trans* Clothing Company and Kyrie Eleison Couture finished the first set with vibrant colors.
The middle of fashion week concluded with designs from Rachel Pollak Designs’ butterfly inspired ready-to-wear looks, KYLNNE’s beautiful white gowns, Kat Burdette’s comfy-looking knitwear, and headliner Lauren Nicole’s collection of detailed gowns.
Passion was well represented on Thursday evening, which was only fitting, as the theme was Ignis (fire, in Latin). And everyone made sure to sport their fiercest looks.
To start, STATURE’S clothing inspired by female empowerment hit the runway in a big way. Next came Pattern+Shape’s cute children’s clothing (and models); Rachel Andrew’s playful patterns for children; Judy Bales Designs’ works of art; and AD Delgado’s enchanting evening wear for all, which closed the first half.
The second half of the show featured ROOM 22’s colorful, dramatic ensembles, Nokota.Style’s detailed pieces, Aida Stenholm’s Peruvian garments and accessories, and Borris Powell. who closed the show with magnificent accessories and clothing.
The AETHER Featured Designer Showcase was a personal favorite. Headliners K:13 and Dan Richters kicked the show off on the Allure Med Spa Runway to Beauty, and Angela B., Brakhage Designs, Chessna von Abstrakt, MELODYNOY, and Vivi Design Studio also ran the runway during the evening.
This is where (in my humble opinion), Crystal Brakhage (Brakhage Designs) stole the show with her zodiac-themed collection, which focused on the mythology that AETHER (the sky) embodies.
“I really like making women feel powerful and confident,” Crystal says. “Like they can take over the world.” During the showcase, the models did just that as they walked runway.
Brakhage’s designs represented all twelve astrological signs in her Super Nova! collection. From the first glance of her pieces strutting down the runway, the energy of the audience was unmatched as they tried to identify which model represented their particular sign (I was guilty of the same curiosity, as I excitedly waited for an Aquarius garment to grace the stage.)
From the gold fringes of fire signs, jeweled-tones of earth signs, royalty of air signs, and sparkle of water signs, the designer gave attendees much to anticipate between each look.
Much of Brakhage’s passion for fashion showed through in all of her designs. The young designer from Tobias, Nebraska had a collection that took control of the crowd and, for one moment, made each zodiac sign feel unique and radiant.
All the hard work and dedication Brakhage put in was acknowledged when she won the VIP Runway’s Featured Designer Finale Golden Shears.
Omaha Fashion Week went out in style with the VIP Runway Finale, which celebrated the top featured and emerging designers competing for Fashion Cups and prize packages.
The OFW Nightly Designer Winners were Anna Naomi by Anna Kuhlman and Kyrie Eleison Couture by Esmeralda Lole, for Emerging Designers. Featured Designer winners were Aida Stenholm and Angela B. by Angela Balderston.
What’s fashion week without an after-party? OFW’s “bubbly” after-party was held at The Empire Room and was the perfect conclusion to the VIP Runway Finale.
This is a contributed piece, and the opinions of the writer do not necessarily reflect those of Omaha Magazine.