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Date » 2012 » September

What To Do This Weekend


Characters Welcome: An International Sticker Art Show

Come on, who doesn’t like stickers? And who wouldn’t want to peruse an array of really unique stickers from artists all over the world while knocking back a few brews and maybe some waffle fries? If you’re lucky, you may just find an open pool table. Hosted by Sticky Bandits, more than 20 artists will be showing off their tiny sticky masterpieces, most of which you can expect to include some funny looking creatures. Tonight the show will be going down at Tattooed Mom and on Saturday it’ll be moving just down the street to CRED Magazine’s On-Site Gallery. Friday, 7pm-2am. Free. Tattooed Mom, 530 South St. Saturday, 1-4pm. Free. CRED On-Site Gallery, 325 South St.

GO WEST Craft FestGO WEST Craft Fest!

Ah yes, it’s that time of year again. More than 50 artists local artisans will be setting up tables at the historic West Philly green space to sell their one-of-a-kind wares—everything from home goods, accessories and bath and body products, to screen-printed tees, cards and original artworks. Some of the vendors you’ll definitely want to keep your eyes peeled for: Seam Poets, Topstitch Design, Treat Shoppe Charms, Foxglove Factory, Exit 343 Designs and VIX Emporium. There will also be live entertainment every hour. Should you work up an appetite whilst navigating through the sea of one-of-a-kind treasures, Black Orchid will serving up its vegan specialties along with a handful of other local food vendors. A rain date is scheduled for Sunday. 11am. Free. The Woodlands Cemetery, 4000 Woodland Ave.

Philadelphia_Bella_Vista2nd Annual Bella Vista Home Tour

As a Bella Vista/Queens Village resident, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve passed houses and tried to sneak a peek inside. I love people who leave their lights on and blinds open.  Creepy? Yes. But I prefer the term inquisitive. Anyway, eight amazing houses will be opening their doors to strangers around the neighborhood for this second annual fundraiser event. Who knows, perhaps you’ll pick a few design or decorating ideas for your own abode? Plus, you won’t have to be creepy about it. Sunday, 1-5pm. $15-$18. Various locations, visit for more info.

Cherry-Hill-MallBridal Show

Regardless of whether or not you’ve got an actual engagement ring on your finger, it’s never too late start planning. Should you be looking to do some serious shopping on Sunday, consider heading to the Cherry Hill Mall where there will be a free bridal fair featuring a slew of vendors covering everything from photography to cakes. Even better: Macy’s Bridal Salon by Demetrios will be hosting a fashion show featuring their best gowns starting at 3 p.m. Sunday, 11am-6pm. Free. Cherry Hill Mall, 2000 Rt. 38, Cherry Hill.

Knight Arts Challenge Now Taking Proposals for Community Art-Project Grants

Want to make a Philadelphia community cooler with something artistic, but don’t have the funding for turn your idea into reality? The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation is throwing down $9 million worth of investment via its Knight Arts Challenge Philadelphia, which launched a couple years ago with the sole purpose of helping Philadelphia artists, businesses, and organizations to enrich their neighborhoods through innovative creativity. Back in 2010, the Challenge supported photographer Zoe Strauss’ I-95 project; with 71 projects funded already and $5.4 million dollars awarded, there’s no reason you shouldn’t give it a shot too. No idea is too big or small, and you don’t have to have the art-world reputation of a Strauss to apply. You do have to think fast, though: The application deadline for the third round of proposals is only two and a half weeks away on October 15. May the best ideas win! — CAROLINE NEWTON

sheena | Sep 28 2012 9:00am | CULTURE, art, great idea, grants | Comments 0

Bernie Robbins Launches A Student Design Contest

Bernie Robbins Student Design Contest If you’re one of the thousands of budding young designers in this city, here’s one opportunity definitely worth considering: In conjunction with its yearlong 50th Anniversary celebration, Bernie Robbins Jewelers is launching its first-ever design contest, open to any and all fashion and design students throughout the region.

Since the winning design will be sold in Bernie Robbins’ stores throughout PA and NJ as part of their Spring 2013 collection, contestants are asked to incorporate the brand and its 50-year heritage into their design concept. Upping your chances: you can enter up to three different designs through the retailer’s Web site.

The contest will be judged through votes on Facebook as well as a celebrity jewelry panel that includes designers from such world-renowned brands as Hearts On Fire, Ippolita, Penny Preville and more. Besides how well the design reflects the brand, the judges will obviously be making their decisions based on its originality, creativity and commercial appeal.

The winning student will receive a cash prize of $500 and a portion of sales from their piece will go towards a scholarship fund for their alma mater or particular design program. More importantly, they’ll get a rather impressive bullet point to add to their resume.

The contest deadline is Nov. 1 and voting will be open to the public through Nov. 30. The finalists will be announced on Facebook on Dec. 5.

Thursday: Knit Wit Grand Opening Party

knitwit1With Knit Wit now finally settled into their new home at 1729 Chestnut St., it’s time to officially celebrate.

Tomorrow night the Center City boutique will be hosting a grand opening bash from 5-8 p.m., featuring live music, cocktails and a Lionette trunk show. One of the two international ladies behind the unique jewelry brand, Vanessa Lee will also be in attendance should you want to inquire about the inspiration behind their classic, yet exotic pieces.

I had a chance to see Knit Wit’s new space on Fashion’s Night Out and I’m dying to know who their interior decorator is. Be sure to head to the back of the shop and check out their adorable curio cabinet full of miscellaneous antique trinkets as well as the style inspiration quote board.

Little history lesson: Knit Wit is actually one of the city’s oldest independently-run boutiques having open more than 40 years ago just down the street at 1020 Chestnut St.

Philly Fashion Week 2012 Recap

runwayIt’s crazy to think that my very first assignment as a PW Style contributor was covering the 2010 Philadelphia Fashion Week.

Back then there were actually two different local fashion weeks: the “official” Philadelphia Fashion Week that I attended which was hosted by The KB Experience and the not-so official Philly Fashion Week by FBH Agency. Due to financial troubles, The KB Experience hasn’t been able to produce the event since, thus relinquishing the “official” PFW status to Kevin Parker and Kerry Scott of FBH Agency.

Now that this has been explained, allow me to cut to the chase: of all the runway shows, store openings, trunk shows and general fancy style events that I’ve been to the past three years, none have been as poorly organized as those hosted by Mr. Parker and Mr. Scott.

I opted to hold my tongue after PFW last year and after the terrible charity runway show FBH held a few months ago, hoping that things would be different this time around.

But I was wrong. So very wrong.

As usual, the runway shows on Friday and Saturday night didn’t start on time. In fact, they started over an hour late. And for whatever reason, they always insist on making everyone wait outside the venue. Last year, I was told that press needed to arrive an hour early, meaning that I was left to twiddle my thumbs for two hours.P1190106

Once inside the massive warehouse, there’s was nothing for guests to do to kill time before the show—just two vendors and a cash bar. First of all, the lack of free booze is totally mind-boggling. I say this not just because I’m a total lush who demands free shit wherever I go, but because a runway show without complimentary champagne, wine or cocktails is simply unheard of.

Especially when you’re charging people $40 a ticket and excepting them to sit through a two-hour fashion show on a Friday and Saturday night.

I realize that the agency is trying to make a profit, but considering that PFW had almost 30 different sponsors this year, paying $6 for a lime-less Corona or $10 for a tiny cocktail seems like quite the rip off. Seriously, GET A DRINK SPONSOR! It’s actually quite easy.  As for the lack of vendors, I could name at least hundred local crafters and artists who would have loved the opportunity to showcase and sell their wares. Again, all if would have required is FBH to take a little more initiative.

Once the show finally started, photographers and bloggers in attendance had no way of keeping track of the designers. I assume that Mr. Parker and Mr. Scott have been to fashion shows before. So they should know that it’s customary to provide the audience with a program that lists the featured designers in the order that they appear, maybe even offering a little background on the collection or a description of the individual garments.

Nope. Instead the MC just announced their names and you were expected to figure out the spelling yourself. Here’s the kicker: they didn’t even have a list available upon request (or online).

P1190066Call me crazy, but I do believe that the whole point of a fashion show is to promote a deserving group of designers. Providing the names of said designers seems about the most basic part of the promotional process. The second most basic would be responding to local fashion bloggers when they request tickets (as oppose to making them send multiple emails).

This brings me to the whole point of my lengthy rant: Philly Fashion Week is doing a terrible disservice to the local fashion and design community.

Due to the continual lack of preparation, consideration and organization put forth by Mr. Parker and Mr. Scott (which is absolutely inexplicable since, according to their Web site, they’ve been producing PFW for six years now), basically they’re alienating local journalists, designers, fashion enthusiasts, retailers and potential fashion buyers.

Hell, on Friday and Saturday, they couldn’t even find a designer or boutique to provide jewelry or footwear.

The fact that the PFW runway shows are scheduled on the same night as several of the bigger Philadelphia Collection events only makes matters worse. Why would you want to be competing with one another? Why not milk the opportunity to generate excitement about our local fashion scene as much as possible and have Fashion Week be an extension of the Collection?

Let’s face it, our fashion week is always going to be a joke compared to that of New York. But does that mean we shouldn’t even be trying to take it seriously?

Emmy’s 2012 Best-Dressed

I was totally blown away by the fashion that came down the red carpet last night at the 2012 Primetime Emmy’s Awards. Color! Prints! Sequins! There was barely a plain black dress in sight.

Honestly, I don’t think choosing the best-dressed starlets has ever been this hard. But after a lot of time and consideration, I was eventually able to narrow down my favorite gowns. ariel_winter

Ariel Winter

There appears to be some sorta unspoken rule about wearing a printed dress to an award show so I was really happy to see a few actresses rocking florals this year. This one was by far the best (looks almost like a mosaic). I don’t even know who Ariel Winter is, but props to her for taking a risk opting for a unique dress by lesser known designer (Katharine Kidd from L.A). I would have gone with a slightly fancier, not so matchy-matchy shoe, but this girl is only 14-years-old so I’ll cut her some slack.


Julianne Hough

Who knew blue would be so popular this year? This aqua, sequin-covered Georges Hobeika gown is so damn pretty that I’m willing to overlook her inappropriately dramatic makeup and hair (seriously, why would you do a smoky eye with this dress?). I also feel like the shape isn’t the most flattering on her body since it only makes her breasts look smaller and her hips look wider. Nevertheless, Julianne looks like a beautiful couture mermaid. She also gets additional points for being the only actress to wear a sweetheart neckline last night that her boobs didn’t spill out of.


Hayden Panettiere

Holy cannoli. As stunning as I thought this sari-inspired Marchsa gown looked in photos, when Hayden came out to present an award, it literally made me gasp. I proceeded to leer at the dress with my mouth open every second she remained on camera. I didn’t even notice the gold leaf detailing until seeing it up close. It may be one of my favorite red-carpet dresses of all time. And while Hayden has a tendency to go overboard with the self-tanner, I feel like she’s perfectly golden this time around. The simple tight bun was also a great choice. Doing anything that detracts from this gown would be an absolute crime.


Philly Fashion Week 2012: Ready-To-Wear

While The Philadelphia Collection may have ended on Thursday, the local fashion mania continued this weekend as Philly Fashion Week 2012 wrapped up, hosting its final two runway shows at 2424 Studios in Fishtown.

Friday night’s show was devoted to ready-to-wear fashions from a total of ten designers, both local and national. After an hour or so delay, finally Dramtik Fanatic got the party started with their collection of fun, futuristic cocktail dresses.

I started to get a little worried a few minutes later as the featured fashions seemed to quickly go from flashy to trashy (or, as I wrote in my notebook: “Ready-to-wear…to the club…and only the club”). Apparently, genital-revealing apparel is really in this fall. I also couldn’t help but notice that all of the models were wearing the same boring black or nude platforms, some inappropriately hooker-esque.

Fortunately, there were still plenty of great designers in the line up, including the ladies of Aso Damisi. My other local faves: Mah-jing Wong and Pretty Pretty Rebel. I love how the strategically placed stripes and cut outs on Wong’s fashion-forward pieces seem to really highlight a woman’s natural shape. Meanwhile, combining polka dots, frills and bold floral prints, Pretty Pretty Rebel definitely appeals to my unwavering inner 12-year-old. 

Anyway, without further adieu, here’s some of the many looks from the evening. Be sure to check back tomorrow as I’ll be sharing photos from Saturday night’s show as well as my overall thoughts of Philly Fashion Week 2012.

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