As most of you probably know by now, tonight, DesignPhiladelphia kicks off it’s eight year, showcasing and exploring this city’s rich design history during five straight days of events all over town—from workshops, lectures and panel discussions to exhibitions, runway shows and parties.
Be sure to pick up a copy of this week’s issue of PW to read up on the how the festival got started and what it hopes to achieve. In the meantime, with over 120 events lined up this year, I figured I’d lend a hand as you attempt to make plans.
Having now thoroughly examined the festival schedule and flipped through the huge stack of invites and press releases on my desk, here’s my picks for the most worthwhile happenings going down tonight and tomorrow.
Also, to get you feeling a little more pumped up about Philly’s vibrant design scene, check out the video at the bottom of the post.
PopUp Place: DesignPhiladelphia Kick Off Party: After a ticketed cocktail party and benefit celebration, all are welcome to a free street party along the 900 block of Canal Street featuring live music, outdoor projections and a SoReFa (Socially Responsible Fashion) Showcase curated by Arcadia Boutique, featuring looks from their favorite local and sustainable designers with hair and makeup by Moko. Guests can also build an interactive architectural structure with Public Workshop, chillax with friends in a “pallet lounge” designed by Bonzai Homes and check out the DesignPhilly sustainable design exhibition /adaptations /. 7:30-10pm. Free. Provenance Architecturals, 912 Canal St.
Cat Walk Promenade – CandyCoated Trunk Show: Candy Depew, the wonderfully eccentric designer/printer of CandyCoated will be teaming up with fellow awesome local designer, Lobo Mau and the Philadelphia Art Alliance for what could very well be the most epic fashion/trunk show this city has ever seen. What makes it so epic? Well, for starters, they’ll be rolling into the park on a three-wheeled tricycle, which will serve as the “trunk” show. Meanwhile, models will strut their stuff down the square’s walkways showcasing Candy’s latest collection of one-of-a-kind garments, created in collaboration with Mau. But these won’t be just your typical models. Rather, to celebrate Candy’s eternal kitty love, the models will be transformed head-to-toe into adorable cats. So yeah, sounds pretty epic to me. 5:30pm. Free. Rittenhouse Square 18th & Walnut Sts.
Printing in the Open: During this one-night-only, interactive printing event, guests are invited to bring their own t-shirts, tote bags or bandana and have them customized with the unique print designs of three local artists. These prints will be inspired by the Print Center’s current op-art exhibit, Color Motion: Edna Andrade Prints. If you don’t have a plain tote bag lying around, there will be some there for purchase. Thursday, 6-8pm. Free. The Print Center, 1614 Latimer St.
Hacker Masquerade DIY Mask Workshop (Put An LED On It): Haven’t decided on a Halloween custom yet? No worries—the brilliant hacking wizards of The Hackory are going to help you make a killer, illuminated mask with integrating a little bit of crafts and a little bit of electronics. The friendly volunteers will guide you through the process, providing all the stitchable electronics necessary as well as sample ideas. At the first annual Hacker Masquerade Ball going down later this month, those who come donning their masks will receive free admission. 7pm. $10. The Hacktory, 3711 Market St.
Living HyLo Style: A Fall 2012 Lookbook: Enjoy complimentary libations courtesy of Spodee Wine while checking out HyLo Boutique’s experimental short film, “Living HyLo Style” which spans a day in the life of artisanal Philadelphia, featuring fall picks from local designers including, NINObrand, DannyFox, and M.Brûlée. 7-10pm. Free. HyLo Boutique, 333 S. 20th St.
Creating Content Worth Watching: Sit back and enjoy complimentary drinks and snacks as you watch a curated showcase of case-studies illustrating exactly what goes into making clever online content and videos people want to engage with (ya know, besides nutshots). 7-8pm. Free. The Irish Pub (Upstairs), 2007 Walnut St.
reInspire: Art-from-the-Arts Design Challenge Week: Each day throughout the festival, The Resource Exchange, a North Philly non-profit dedicated to promoting creative reuse, recycling and resource conservation will be unveiling a new creative work, made from materials previously used in disciplines like fashion, digital arts and performing arts. To celebrate the start of the challenge, they are welcoming locals to come and knock back local brews from St. Benjamin Brewing Co. while exploring the weird and wonderful world of film and theater salvage, featuring unique creations constructed entirely out of materials they’ve saved from local productions. 5-9pm. Free. The Resource Exchange, 2829 Cedar St.
Public Space: Public Connections: Have an idea for how to best utilize the public spaces near City Hall? Then stop by “The Arcade” at 16th and Market and share it with The City Planning Comission while taking part in their interactive walk-by afternoon workshop. 12-2pm. Free. The Arcade, 1601 Market St.
Be sure to follow PWStyle on Twitter (@PWStyle) as I shall be tweeting like a madwoman from as many events as I can possibly make. Also, check back on Friday for a weekend guide to DesignPhilly.