NEW YORK — The High Line is getting a jump on Fashion Week by organizing its very own runway show that will be free and open to the public.
The High Line Back-to-School Teen Fashion Show will be held on Aug. 29 in the Chelsea Market Passage, the somewhat enclosed area on The High Line between West 15th and 16th Streets. Members of Friends of the High Line and 13 area teenagers will curate the catwalk with production assistance and artistic direction from Harlem’s Front Row and Caravan Stylist Studio. Professional models will hit the runway wearing fall looks designed and styled by the teens and such American designers as Boy Meets Girl, Huminska, Junk Food Clothing, LaQuan Smith, TABii Just and Synderela. The underage designers will also select shoes and accessories from HSN.com and Michelle Vale for the show.
The event is part of Friends of the High Line’s Community Engagement program that aims to encourage park stewardship among New Yorkers who live and/or work near the elevated park. For the students, the runway show will cap off a two-month apprenticeship program that was organized by Friends of the High Line, with funding from the Ford Foundation. Last month and throughout this month, the aspiring fashionistas have had a lot of territory to cover including studio time with “Project Runway” Season 9’s Kim Goldson, fashion stylists from HSN.com, Pop Beauty Cosmetics make-up artists and hair stylists from Salon Grafix. They are also taking advantage of workshops with fashion designers and event planners to learn about casting the models, hair, makeup and nail design as well as photography and blogging, said Caravan Stylist Studio founder Claudine DeSola.
“The students will be involved in every aspect of the show that is happening, which is pretty exciting,” she said. “We are also using a mix of model sizes to promote the fact that we don’t want to just have models that are a size zero or two. This is about the community and it is important there is a realness to the show.”
To some degree, the High Line Back-to-School Teen Fashion Show is a response to a neighborhood survey conducted by the nonprofit in the spring and summer of 2011. Made possible with support from the Nathan Cummings Foundation, that survey polled more than 800 residents in the Robert Fulton Houses and Chelsea-Elliott Houses, which are two New York City Housing Authority complexes close to the High Line. Adult participants indicated they would like to see job training and skill-building opportunities for local teens, and many teens said they were interested in creating public programs and activities involving fashion on the High Line.
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