For a brief moment I wanted to rip my shirt off with my bare hands and scream “feed me more” like WWE wrestler Ryback but with my son in hand and realization of my surroundings I had to refrain. BBFW 2014 had awaken my inner beast and left me hungry for more. The independence weekend kicked of at the Hilton Barbados Hotel with an invite only cocktail launch and press release that promised fashion enthusiasts that they were in for a treat. Take my word for it, as it was surely a weekend to remember with two nights of fresh and innovating designs showcasing Spring/Summer 2015 collections from both the local and international celebrity designers. The air was filled with loud coos of approval, blinding flashes and shuttering sounds of the cameras.
The runway shows kicked off with Jewelry by Antonia. It was a selection of beautiful necklaces, earrings and bracelets that ranged from simple yet stunning pieces to more elaborate breath taking ones. These designs would make the perfect statement piece as the could be worn with a red carpet look or easily dress up a more toned down outfit.
The collection by Jacqueline Benn Schuppe was named Ling Ling; a name she is affectionately known by and it was influenced by the 50’s. Clever use of denim, tulle, lace and cotton modernized her vintage inspired pieces. One could never refer to her collection as dated with an array of dresses, classic blouses and skirts well accentuated with accessories appropriate to the time the era from pearls to turbans and other head pieces.
Up and coming designer Carla Gittens fresh from Jamaica Mission Catwalk season 4 where she was first runner-up debuted her collection Designs By Carolori for the first time here at BBFW. Carla’s collection was feminine and give an air of effortless with bold bows and flowers to compliment some of the contemporary designs.
This was the second time for Charles Corvsky Dieujuste showing at BBFW and he surely lived up to expectations based on his previous showcase. Once again femininity and sophistication was evident as his collection breathed luxurious elegance with chic flowing pieces. Charles final piece was a crowd pleaser, comprising of a black lace and tulle dress which was more risque but it was still coherent with the other looks as it easily flowed down the runway.
Learning a second language is always a plus and it offered me the privilege of working with designer Karlos Nunez as Dominica Republic as his translator. His menswear line entitled “Men Tailory” had a touch of the 40’s yet it was very modern. There was a wide selection of ready to wear pieces that were sharp and crisp accessorized with suspenders, gold chains links, hats and designer bags. His pieces showed great detail, craftsmanship and understanding of fabrics. Favorites with the crowd and myself were his trench coats pieces which had a hint of suspense to the character. Over all his collection would be perfect for the man looking for the “charming gentlemen” look.
The word “Anticipation” would be an understatement when referring to the level of excitement there was to see the collection “Alien Queen” by Viktor Luna finalist of Project Runway season 9. Viktor drew his inspiration from the pop king himself, the legend Michael Jackson. Just like Michael was ahead of his times, Viktor’s collection was avant-garde, futuristic, biker chic yet feminine. His designs mostly consisted of leather pieces, bondage straps, armor like details, spikes and studs giving a yin-yang feeling of good and bad merged into one. The final piece really embodied the collection’s name “Alien Queen” and at the end of his collection all I could say was ” Abduct me now! Beam me up Scottie”.
So there is no doubt in my mind and I can truly say that once again Barbados has proved to be the fashion capital in the Caribbean.