from Austin Fashion Week
Austin Fashion Week kicks off this Friday, Aug. 10. Matt Swinney, founder of the event, talks about the Austin fashion scene.
Editor’s note: This article is the first in a series coverage of events for the fourth annual Austin Fashion Week (AFW).
With the much anticipated Shift Into Style Kickoff Event underway, all eyes are drawn towards the fashion community’s brightest talent – where one man, AFW founder Matt Swinney, believed enough to shine the first spotlight.
“The city has been really receptive to Austin Fashion Week, which is a testament to how much it has grown over the past four years,” said Swinney. “To me, [AFW] is about giving the local fashion industry a platform on which to show their work to the world.”
Swinney says as “a fifth generation Austinite” he has grown accustomed to the atmosphere and inspiration of the city limits, which help make AFW strive on its own.
“For inspiration, we follow the other big Fashion Weeks in New York, Milan, Paris and London, but we have tried to build a Fashion Week that works for Austin -- very focused on local designers, highlighting retailers, spas, salons and showcasing national designers that speak to [our] unique style,” said Swinney.
Perfectly representing this notion is celebrated designer and After A Fashion columnist for The Austin Chronicle Stephen Moser. “I made it my mission to try and raise the bar in fashion,” he said. Serving on the Advisory Board, Moser says he “always looks forward to how AFW improve their presentation”.
Like Moser, another force and regular on runway sidelines is Cheryl Bemis, founder of the online network Fashionably Austin. “Just when I think I’ve experienced the end all, be all of fashion, a new door always opens,” said Bemis, who has provided local coverage as an AFW media sponsor from the start in 2009.
And someone taking his first steps through that door is current CW Star, Michael “Mic” Trotty. “I’m coming in as just your average guy, said Trotty. “But Austin is such a diverse city that every time you go out, you see something different.”
According to Swinney with more than 22,000 people expected to attend, onlookers whether veteran or novice, won’t be disappointed. “We always hope for the most recent incarnation of Fashion Week to be better than the last,” Swinney stated, elaborating that he and his team stand “continually building and improving, taking what we've learned in years past and implementing changes to better serve the community and industry overall.”
The 2012 Austin Fashion Week is set to begin Friday, August 10 through Saturday, August 18. For a full schedule of events, please visit the AFW website. Swinney also notes that a discount to the finale, Austin Fashion Awards, “will be offered at the door, the day of the Awards, based on availability. Tickets will be $20 (cash only) with a valid student ID.” For further updates, see the Austin Fashion Week Facebook page.