By Vanessa Culpepper - email
BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - After eight days of style inspiration in the Magic City, Birmingham Fashion Week 2013 is a wrap.
Local fashionistas, media outlets and even a few celebrities like country singer Sara Evans, got exposure to some internationally recognized designers.
Finale night started with a dramatic presentation from Birmingham Fashion Week co-founder and bridal designer Heidi Elnora. The Fall 2013 "Heavenly Days" Collection, inspired by the film "Snow White and the Huntsman," featured handmade bridal gowns with beautiful lace, beading and ruffle detailing.
Spectators also got a look at up and coming designers from Alabama. Elizabeth Singleton of Vestavia Hills earned the title of Emerging Designer and Annie Bloomston of Mountain Brook was named Rising Design star.
The show ended with beautifully tailored and effortlessly chic styles from Tibi. Headlining designer Amy Smilovic showcased her Spring 2013 collection, grounded in black and white with pops of pastels, graphic prints and leather detailing.
So, what is Birmingham's appeal for someone who is more accustomed to the runways of New York Fashion Week, whose collections are sold in more than 600 retailers worldwide and whose looks are commonly seen on celebrities like Olivia Palermo and Emma Stone?
For Smilovic, the answer is simple.
"Fashion is really fun and exciting. I think style adds a lot to people's lives and I think people should experience it in all cities, not just New York, Paris and London," she said.
It doesn't hurt that Birmingham Fashion Week is orchestrated by several driven, passionate and well-connected fashion supporters.
Tibi is sold in Crestline Village boutique, Laura Kathryn. Boutique owner and buyer Leslie Pittman reached out to Smilovic's reps and helped take Birmingham Fashion Week to another level.
Georgia-raised Smilovic was happy to revisit her Southern roots and support the growing fashion scene in Birmingham.
"People have certain things that are close to their heart. For me, the main reason I'm here is I'm from the South and I love respecting where I'm from and coming back."
With Tibi headlining the 2013 finale show and the week's events continuing to expand, the future is looking fabulous for Birmingham Fashion week.
Co-founders Heidi Elnora and Jeanna Lee Flemming said, "Next year will be bigger and better."
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