Ready for the Runway – 2nd Annual MV Fashion Week

I know that fashion may not be a top priority for everyone on the Vineyard, but let’s face it, there is a lot of style here.  It might not be the same as the big city, but we definitely have our own flair.  So, why not strut our stuff down the catwalk?

Nestled between the Fashion Weeks of New York and Boston is our own Martha’s Vineyard Fashion Week, September 17th – 22nd.  In it’s second year, MVFW is full of fashion and fun in true Vineyard style.  Wondering how this fun-filled event came about?  Well, all it took was a dream and the determination of an MV fashionista, Trena Morrison, the Director of MVFW.

From Bryant Park to Ocean Park

Since she was four years old, Trena loved fashion, and followed that dream in NYC.  Before moving here, she had worked in the fashion industry for some big names like, Giorgio Armani, Joseph Abboud, and Gap International.  What would make her come here and leave that all behind? Family and she fell in love here — ah, how we seem to get so many of our talented transplants.

Now married with two beautiful girls, Trena still has a passion for fashion.  She decided last year that it was time to do something with it, and showcase the fashion here she has come to love, welcome Martha’s Vineyard Fashion Week.

The perfect way for Trena to funnel that passion into something fun (and rewarding for her) for the community.  She knew that there were a number of stores here that carried some amazing clothes well suited for an MV runway, and that the Island had numerous talented clothing designers and jewelry designers.  There was more than enough talent here to put on a fabulous week of fashion.

Besides bringing fashion into focus, MVFW was created to help as way to support Island businesses and artists.  Once people  see all that the local stores have to offer on the runway, some of which is so fabulous it might surprise you, people will be more likely to shop here.  Also, it serves as a platform for talented local designers to show their work, and help promote their businesses.

All of which is great for supporting the strength of our year round economy.  What’s particularly wonderful about this event is that all the fashions are available at the store they are from.  No online ordering or traveling great distances, everything is right here.  Granted, you may want to go the day right after the fashion show because I am sure you will not be the only one coveting certain pieces.

Dressing for a Good Cause – Angel Flight NE

Another added bonus to this fun week is that a portion of the proceeds from the ticketed events goes to Angel Flight NE.  For those of you who may not know what Angel Flight does, it provides free flights for people who are in need of medical treatment.

Approximately 50% of their patients are children, suffering from life-threatening cancer, severe burns or crippling diseases.  The rest of the patients are adults.  Living on Island, this agency is an invaluable resource for so many people who live her.  Last year MVFW was able to raise $5,300 for Angel Flight NE, and hopes to double those numbers this year.

Opening Night Festivities

With a successful inaugural event, Trena and her team added another runway show so now there are three, designer trunk shows, parties of course, and fashion related movies for a week filled with fun and fashion.  The week kicks off on Monday with an opening party and fashion show at Dreamland.

Dreamland is the perfect space for a fabulous catwalk, and with DJ Pretty Ninja and renowned DJ Cassie Stevens spinning killer beats, attendees are sure to have a blast.  Also, I imagine that people will be dressed to impress!  Stores featured for the opening night are some of my favs including PIK NIK, Hannah B, Saffron, and more.

Fashion & The Silver Screen

Get ready to hit the cinema.  In collaboration with the MV Film Society, three relevant and thought provoking films focused on the world of fashion will be shown.  All three  films will be shown at the new MV Film Center in Vineyard Haven.

On Tuesday night, it’s Bill Cunningham New York. A documentary about the famous New York Times photographer.  Apparently, this bike-riding cultural anthropologist has been chronicling fashion trends and high-society charity events for the Times‘ Style section in his columns. 

Thursday night after the MV Fashion Week Trunk Show, it’s movie time, Vidal Sassoon the Movie.  Vidal Sassoon is a name that we’re all familiar.  This one man had such a major impact on the world of hair, and we all know that hair and make-up are a big part of fashion.  From the girl who has had the same haircut for 10 years (me), to the woman who changes her hair monthly, it truly is a part of one’s style.

On Friday night, it’s God Save My Shoes.  Also a documentary, this film is the first to explore the sometimes obsessive relationship between women and shoes.  Come on, I know there are a lot of ladies on the Island that have a “shoe problem.”  Perhaps it’s time to go out and meet others who share your passion..

Sand & Fashion Under the Vineyard Sky

On to the second runway show of the week, Summer’s Not Over.  On Wednesday night, grab your pals and head to the Sand Bar & Grille which has a perfect runway in place already.  Sand between your toes, a drink in your hand, friends by your side, watching the ladies and gentlemen of MV strut down the catwalk in late Summer fashions — sounds like the perfect evening.

For this memorable show, you’ll find fashions from Basics & Eastaway, Citrine, On Kennebec, b*tru, The Green Room and designs by Karen Russillo of Menagerie and Ashley Chase of Sea.Love.Swimwear.

Something I have to mention for this event is the goodie bags.  Yes, you’ll be taking home some serious swag from OPI, Johnny Cupcakes, Simply Soaps, Blistex, Bryn Walker, and more.  I don’t know about you, but I really enjoy getting great stuff like this at an event.  Another reason that this is a not-to-miss evening of fashion.

Trunk Show Time

Get ready to shop!  At the Vineyard Square Hotel & Suites on Thursday night, be prepared to be dazzled by the creations of some of the Vineyard’s favorite designers including jewelry by Buddha Kanuddha Designs, and jewelry and bags by Rebeccah J, and scarves by Libby Ellis Designs, just to name a few.  There be food and cocktails flowing along with all those custom goodies to buy.

Ready for the Red Carpet

Yes my friends, MVFW is rolling out the red carpet for the closing party on Saturday at Dreamland, It’s a Marvelous Night for a Moondance.  This event will be sure to get you excited for Fall fashion.  Stores are previewing what’s in trend for the upcoming season.  For this event, the models will be actual models from Dynasty Models, Boston.  These beautiful people will be rocking Boston Fashion Week runways the following week.

See what’s hot at The Green Room, NRO, Once in a Blue Moon, and what local designers Chelsea Phaneuf & Rose Goff Maidoff, Karen Russillo, Marlene DiStefano & Randi Sylvia, and Noava Knight have up their sleeves.  DJ Pretty Ninja will be spinning the tunes while the fashions hit the runway.  This is one event that is not to be missed by all you MV fashionistas.

This year’s Martha’s Vineyard Fashion Week promises to bring you the Vineyard glamour we need.  With Summer wrapping up, let’s be inspired locally.  With so much talent here between our stores, designers and jewelry makers, you can dress for any occasion and show your personal style.

So, save space in your September calendar for these events.  Check out the MVFW website for a list of all the events and designers.  Be ready to tap into your own passion for fashion and at the same time help Angel Flight NE raise the money they need to help Islanders get the medical care they need.

Aside from attending an event or two, I feel as though I too need to help support this event because it touches so many different Island businesses and of course Angel Flight NE.  So, the next two On Point blog post will feature local designers.  Who?  Well, you’ll just have to wait and see.

I forget to mention, you can purchase tickets for any of mentioned events at

Photo Credits: Tim Johnson, Colin Young, Liz Witham, Ken Wentworth, Steven Savard Photography

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Thanks for reading On Point – I hope you enjoyed it.  You can find MVFW on Facebook.  And speaking of social media, don’t forget to  “Like” us on Facebook, on follow us on TwitterLinked InPinterest and YouTube.

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