Kansas City Fashion Week is a nexus of fashion professionals. Featuring local, national and international designers, each year KCFW produces two full weeks of premier runway shows, enabling designers to collaborate with seasoned stylists, make-up artists, models and photographers to present their collections in the most professional atmosphere imaginable.
Kansas City Fashion Week is preparing to conduct its 15th consecutive fashion week. That we are still growing with each passing season is evidence of the re-emerging and vibrant Kansas City fashion industry. Kansas City Public Television has documented our industry's rise to prominence in the 1930's, and decline thereafter, as well as the revitalized marketplace for Kansas City fashion today.
We at KCFW are pleased to serve as a pillar of support for the hundreds of designers, craftspersons, retail establishments, models, stylists, and photographers who have led the resurgence. We are particularly proud to partner with KCPT in documenting the fashion space of Kansas City for the next several months as we work together in the production of "Walk, Turn, Walk" for KCPT, along with one of our wonderful designers this season, Audrey Lockwood of “Devil Doll by Audrey Lockwood.”
KCPT describes "Walk, Turn, Walk" as a "historical and observational documentary about Kansas City’s fashion industry. Through multimedia stories about fashion show producers, designers, models and historians, Kansas City PBS’ “Walk, Turn, Walk” is a comprehensive and thrilling peek behind the scenes of Kansas City’s premier fashion event, Kansas City Fashion Week.
We thank you for being a partner with us as we continue to build a viable, sustainable Kansas City fashion industry.
The Bachelor’s Alex Bordyukov spoke with our Fashion Editor and Model Rebecca Mardikes. Rebecca was provided questions by KCFW participants. He answered ALL of them! Read about them now and get to know all about Alex!
KCFW: What did you know about The Bachelor before you went ahead and joined the show? Did you have previous knowledge on the show?
Bordyukov: Before the show, I did not know much [about it]. I was interested in the production when they called me and then decided to consider it!
KCFW: What was it like to be on The Bachelor?
Bordyukov: There is nothing like it. It was different and a very memorable experience.
KCFW: Where were you in your life and what were you doing before you decided to go on The Bachelor?
Bordyukov: Before the show I was in a good place! I felt established but was seeking a significant other.
KCFW: What are you doing now AFTER The Bachelor?
Bordyukov: After The Bachelor I travel for work as an IT accountant. Today I will also travel for whenever a fun neat opportunity happens here and there, such as Kansas City Fashion Week! I didn’t want the show to change my life, I wanted it to enhance the life I already created.
KCFW: You won “Best Dressed” on The Bachelor! Tell us about your style and where you get your inspiration.
Bordyukov: My inspiration is bold styles, colors and patterns. I want a shock factor but nothing too obnoxious.
KCFW: How would you describe the perfect date?
Bordyukov: My ideal date would be to eat ice cream at the zoo.
KCFW: What is your type?
Bordyukov: I am a big fan of goofy!
KCFW: Do you prefer to pursue or to be pursued?
Bordyukov: I personally prefer being pursued, before and after show.
KCFW: Who is YOUR celebrity crush?
Bordyukov: My celebrity crush is Tiffany Haddish.
KCFW: How did you get involved in fashion and runway modeling?
Bordyukov: The Brand Ambassador for Kansas City Fashion Week, Edward Manoukian, invited me to participate in the show and the rest is history!
KCFW: Who are your favorite designers?
Bordyukov: My favorite designer is Mr. Turk. I really like Taft shoes.
KCFW: If you were a clothing brand, which one would you identify as?
Bordyukov: I would identify as John Varvatos.
KCFW: What night are you walking in KCFW and for whom?
Bordyukov: I will be walking in Kansas City Fashion Week on Wednesday and for Eddie Bauer.
KCFW: Would you rather wear Abercrombie or Sandals with socks?
Bordyukov: I would rather wear sandals and socks.
KCFW: Omg! Can you ask him out for me?
KCFW: Have you learned any modeling moves from Jordan Kimball
Bordyukov: If I learned from him it would be a regression, I’m self-taught! Haha.
KCFW: Have you practiced runway walking before since this is your first time?
Bordyukov: My first walk will be Wednesday night. No practice.
KCFW (Rebecca):Will you take me on a date?
--Rebecca Mardikes, KCFW Fashion Editor
(Webmaster’s Note: - Neither Alex nor Rebecca have been seen since this interview.)
KCFW season S/S ‘19 is proud to present Rachel Roy and her ready-to-wear designs on our runway Saturday, September 29th. Roy recently has received a two-year position as UN Ambassador. Her platform is to empower women. Celebrity clients that Rachel Roy has dressed throughout her career are: Michelle Obama, Diane Sawyer, Kim Kardashian, Kate Hudson, Jennifer Garner, Tyra Banks, Wendy Williams, and Penélope Cruz.
KCFW Fashion Editor, Rebecca Mardikes, interviewed Rachel Roy on her label’s belief and how it translates into her fashion designs.
KCFW: “Kansas City Fashion Week loves your brand’s mission and message. What initially motivated you to create your label’s belief as, ‘our mission is to empower women and cultivate change in the world through a language of style. That helps women develop their own voice, take risks, and design the life they wish to live.’ Explain what your journey like of identifying this important message? When did you first decide to merge a mission statement with style?”
RR: “When I launched the brand almost 15 years ago, it was very clear to me that the ethos of the brand would be to support women, no matter what stage of life they were in, to design a life that they wanted. I believe that style, individual and unique personal style, can help women on their journey through defining what it is that makes them happy, what it is that makes them stand up a bit taller, and feel the most like themselves. My design approach ebbs and flows with what women want and what adds joy to their lives but the one thing that never changes is my commitment to growing as women and how we create a better world for the next generation.”
KCFW: “Our team is excited to have you on board with KCFW this upcoming season. We have started to notice a trend of designers selecting shows outside of events like New York Fashion Week. Can you describe to us how you first recognized KCFW and what motivated you to contact and participate in our show?”
RR: “Though we have offices in both California and New York City, we have always made it a point to travel the entire country (and the world) to meet women, find out what is important to them and what they need in their lives to help make getting dressed effortless and fun. It’s an important driving force in how we design and how we fit our clothes. Kansas City is a vibrant community that loves fashion and we were so impressed with what the KCFW organization has built!”
KCFW: “Congratulations on becoming a UN Ambassador! What an incredible accomplishment. What do you believe were the steps and tasks that ultimately put you on track to being tapped for this two-year position? What is your full set of responsibilities and how will you use this position to propel the mission of your brand to the media and public?”
RR: “It’s a great honor to work with the UN – a dream come true! For the next two years, I will partner with the UN to help advance opportunities for girls and women in technology and entrepreneurship. One of the programs I’m creating for them is a workshop for International Women’s Day in March that brings together real and actionable information for women, just starting out or established, that are looking to start or grow their business. Philanthropy and entrepreneurship has been a part of my life since a very early age when my parents took us to India and Africa and I saw women and children in great need. I built my business on a founding principle of creating jobs for women in vulnerable areas so they could work and in turn create a better life for themselves and their children.”
KCFW: “What inspires your designs daily? What can we look forward to seeing on the runway this upcoming season? What are your current favorite trends and how will those be represented on the runway?”
RR: “Life and life experiences inspire me. Traveling greatly inspires me! Distilling those experiences and then creating something that women feel wonderful in and that helps them create a personal style is what we strive for everyday. We love prints, colors, and the unexpected. We mix leopard and stripes and florals with gingham – we look for mixes that look unique and less about following a trend. We believe that trends are a step away from being out of fashion, we are more interested in making a woman feel fresh and modern with her clothing choices with items that will last in her wardrobe for many years.”
KCFW: “What are some ways that your design team resembles your brand’s message in the clothing designs? What does this process of design and production look like for you and your team?”
RR: “Design is an on-going and organic process. We start a season with what’s been inspiring us – whether it’s a place we’ve traveled, an art exhibition, fabrics, even a color or print. Then we start to put the pieces together – sketching what we would want to wear in those specifics colors and prints and what our customers are asking for. The collection grows from there and we edit and refine it, adding prints, color, texture and detail, until we feel like we’ve created this living and breathing entity that stands for something. There’s nothing like the design process to inspire and challenge you to grow.”
Rachel Roy continues to inspire us all in the fashion industry to dedicate our lives to our craft and make an even greater personal impact in our community. We are honored the have Rachel Roy as a featured designer at Kansas City Fashion Week. -Rebecca Mardikes KCFW Fashion Editor
Kansas City Fashion Week hosted its annual Garden Party on Sunday, September 23rd at a home available from The Koehler Bortnick Team. Thank you to everyone for attending this beautiful event! We had so much fun celebrating the start of our S/S '19 season! We were excited to see so many amazing people from our community attend this event.
“It was my First Kansas City Fashion Week garden party kickoff event and it went very well. Truly was fantastic to get a chance to talk with Brian Kennedy, and listening to him perform live was amazing!” – Edward Manoukian, KCFW Brand Ambassador
Let's take a look back into the history of fashion in the heart of the midwest, Kansas City. Kansas City Fashion Week first began in March, 2011. The KCFW team and community is now coming up on its 16th season of bringing creative and innovative fashion into the one of the largest cities in the midwest.
Kansas City has a culture that is rich with success in fashion. In the 1940’s, one out of seven women in the city could say they purchased a Kansas City made fashion garment. This step created the platform for the city. Now seeing the industry today, we have noticed some key changes in the fashion community that manifest significant its growth in the city.
To date, there are eleven model agencies, more than a dozen fashion magazines, multiple yearly fashion shows, hundreds of highly regarded fashion photographers, makeup artists and fashion designers. The industry has grown immensely.
Fashion trends are now even more prominent within Kansas City, but what really excites us is seeing those take fashion into their own hands and manifesting their creativity. We notice this especially at events like First Fridays in the Crossroads, street style attire, and those attending fashion events such as Kansas City Fashion Week.
The future for fashion in the midwest? It’s an exciting one. Our team has noticed a trend towards household name fashion designers reaching out to work with major midwest fashion shows. In light of this trend, we are excited to be showing Rachel Roy this upcoming season, s/s ‘19.
Kansas City Fashion Week's footprint in the fashion industry continues to grow. As our media platforms expand, so does our need for quality leadership to steer our efforts. KCFW is pleased to announce its focus on enhancing its digital reach using the vast talent pool from the Kansas City area. A key leader of that initiative will be Rebecca Mardikes, who joins our team as Fashion Editor.
KCFW veterans know Rebecca Mardikes as an accomplished runway and fashion model. She is signed by Exposure Model and Talent, and has vast experience in all aspects of the industry. Her modeling jobs have taken her to New York City, London, Los Angeles, and Miami. Rebecca will return to the KCFW runway for the sixth time this fall.
Off the runway, Rebecca has been published as both a writer and model in magazines from London, Chicago and Kansas City. In London, she worked with Vogue’s Intensive at Condé Nast College of Fashion and Design. Her favorite project while working in London was a social media campaign shoot with Manolo Blahnik. She is a Masters of Arts graduate student at the Missouri School of Journalism with an emphasis in Strategic Communications.
Rebecca currently splits her time between Kansas City and New York City, where she is completing her Master's degree and interning for Rebecca Minkoff as a PR Intern. You will be seeing her name often in the weeks ahead. Welcome Rebecca!