Fashion Night Out 2017

Fashion Night Out (FNO) 2017 made its debut Thursday, October 12th featuring styles on the runway from several local stores in the Wichita Falls area, all benefiting Faith Refuge Career Academy. Onlookers enjoy bites, sips, goody-bags, auctions and a rockin’ show; making it a fun night for all attendees for a great cause! The evening of fashion only happens every other year and this year I was so lucky to be able to walk the runway for my favorite store, Sewn Clothing Gallery!! Here’s to recapping a stylish night I will never forget — *raises coffee mug*

Per usual, planning for this huge runway event started actual months in advance. The stores involved have several meetings in advance to discuss advertising, donations, rules, and the overall lineup of the night. Then comes the fun part, ordering awesome styles for the runway! Every store is different in the way they prepare for this event, working at Sewn I am able to see nearly all behind the scenes actions taken to put the final looks on the stage – no I’m not gonna spill the beans, there is a method to the madness that is FNO! I will say the looks are a culmination of casual to dressy style, utilizing the latest trends we play with until we have 15 killer styles for our models! Since Sewn is fashion friendly to every age, the models are a direct reflection of that – in this show we had models still in high school up to models with precious babies and grown up jobs. The models do a practice run through of the show the night before, and then we are ready to go the day of!

For the models, the day of FNO starts at Tangles Salon for hair and makeup. The entire team at Tangles is all hands on deck, with every stylist doing either hair or makeup. Kandace with Kandace Burns Beauty is a freelance, published, makeup artist who was helping Tangles with makeup. She actually did my makeup for the night, once again outdoing herself with the slap of gorgeous she put on me – but honestly you guys I was obsessed with my look and had countless compliments on my makeup before the night was over! The hair for the night was done similar for all the models in the show, either down with a front-braid and curled or a slicked-back, side-braid like I had. Once hair and makeup was done, the models were free for the day until 4 p.m. when we were to meet at the Women’s Forum, where the event is held, for hair and makeup touch-ups.

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I truly apologize for not capturing a better pic than this of my awesome makeup!!

While some models touched-up their hair and makeup, the two hours before the sold-out event started was spent snacking, mingling, running practice walks, and drinking *a little* liquid encouragement! Time ticked away and soon we were all dressed in our runway outfits being hoisted into the lineup. I’m usually so nervous before doing such an all-eyes-on-me thing like this, but this time I was just so excited to get on that runway and show off my striped blazer-dress Sewn paired with a red and white striped purse with flower detailing, these lightweight blue feather earrings, and these surprisingly easy-to-walk-in stiletto booties! Two models were on the runway at a time and big screens captured each model’s whole outfit as they walked to give a better view for the audience. Sewn’s song of choice was a remix to Taylor Swift’s new single ‘Look What You Made Me Do,’ and as it played I felt cool and confident walking down the runway. My mom got this shot from her camera phone while I stopped to pose at one of the checkpoints and if you can’t tell from my expression – I was totally loving it up there!!

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It’s kinda crazy how much hard work and energy goes into this one night, all for it to start and end so quickly. I swear as soon as I got back from taking my walk, I wanted to go all over again! It was just too much fun and was over too quick to really take it all in as it was happening! After the last store’s models took their walk, all models in the show came down the runway for one last look and then finally the show was over – but the night was just beginning for shopping!

Most of the stores featured in the show stay open late after FNO to allow the attendees to shop the runway looks with big discounts and giveaways! When the show ended some Sewn girls and I went to the runway to take a few pictures, seen above, and then we hurried over to Sewn for the after party where pizza, champagne, and looks were being served to guests! As expected, the after party was a huge success! The store hadn’t been as packed since the grand re-opening of our new location in Parker Square! We stayed open until midnight, when the last of the shoppers left, and then we stripped our feet of the heels we wore all night to relax and relish in yet another successful FNO.

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my rockstar of a boss, Sarah Swanson

All props and a shoutout to Sarah Swanson, owner of Sewn Clothing Gallery. Sarah, you truly provided a fashion show to everyone who attended FNO and your hands-on hard work did not go unnoticed! I’m so thankful to be able to work and learn from you, but even more thankful for the relationship we have built over the past two years. Sewn has not only shaped my fashion sense and style, but has provided me awesome opportunities such as this show, and friendships bound to last a lifetime. Sarah I just wanna thank you for including me in the most special parts of the industry we both love. Until next time, FNO.

As always,

Ara

My outfit was styled by Sewn Clothing Gallery and is available in store now!

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