After showing at Atlantic Fashion Week 2018, I received a email from the Oxford Fashion Institute in the UK inviting East Coast Couture to showcase in their fashion week for 2019. I was even interviewed by Global New Brunswick correspondent, Shelley Steeves to discuss the possibility of traveling overseas for ECC.
You can view the full Global interview here.
I had decided on the London show in the fall, and knew it would be our biggest (most expensive) venture yet as a brand. There was also a Paris show available, but my French is so bad and my husband's nonexistent. After some long discussions with my husband on how we can make this trip happen, we began working out the financials for the event. Choosing the right designer package, flights/hotels, and making sure that my husband would get the leave approved from work. :)
All was going great.
That is until we had the winter we had, and deciding it would be more beneficial to both myself and my husband if we bought a new vehicle. The car we had was great, just not for our Canadian winters. Rear wheel drive made it very stressful for my husband when he had to drive in the snow. So we ended up trading it in for a new 2019 all wheel drive SUV. I was gutted at the idea of London now tossed out the window, but our safety in the winter is priority.
I love our new SUV, and it's perfect for travelling for shows locally or outside of the province, but I couldn't help being in a funk about missing out on travelling to London.
A few days after deciding to cancel our plans for the UK, I got a Instagram message from Francesca Watson. Director of Deck the Runway in Orlando, Florida. She had reached out to me to see if I was interested in showcasing in her holiday fashion show.
I did my homework on the event, and next thing I know my husband is booking flight/hotel for Orlando, Florida! :) I am a firm believer that when 1 door closes, another will open for you. We booked our designer spot with Francesca and began planning the 12 look collection for Deck the Runway. Not only did they have designers from Florida, Missouri, Philadelphia, Maryland, New Jersey, Trinidad & Tobago and Bolivia by way of Washington DC, but also a star studded red carpet event! 0___0
Deck the Runway was on December 14th at the Omni Resort at Championsgate. I arrived around 11am to meet my models and start on their fittings. Around 1pm I was told that 2 of my models had cancelled, and I was still waiting on 2 more girls who ended up pulling no-shows. Luckily I met a model who was called in last minute, and booked her to walk 2 looks, and I was able to have a couple girls walk more than once. I was going to have my 12 looks on the runway. :)
When I was preparing my collection over the summer, I got a message from fellow designer and my mentor, Lainy Gold. She informed me that she too would be showing at Deck the Runway! :D I hadn't seen her since our collaboration in NYC in 2017, and was thrilled to be able to share the runway with her again. :D It was great to see her again. :D
With Lainy Gold <3
After models fittings were complete, I took some time to explore the venue before returning to my hotel to get ready for the show.
The Omni Resort was HUGE!!! 0__0 It reminded me of the Plaza Hotel in NYC. Very high end, and expensive. The hotel had a golf course, joggers trails, 2 pools outdoors and a 'lazy river'. lol The day of the show was the first day that the sun was out since we arrived in Florida. I was tempted to jump in the water. lol
I returned to the resort for 5pm to make sure everything was good with my models, and dropped off my music to the DJ. The designers were told to be on the red carpet by 6:45pm for our on the spot interview with entertainment journalist, Krystal Ketcham.
Now, I've done interviews in the past with Global New Brunswick, but I always seem to psych myself out. Nerves hit me and I tend to get very shy. I'm just a mess. lol Which is so not like me at all! Ask any of my closest friends and they would describe me as the total opposite. :P
I pulled myself together, and made it through the interview portion of the night. :) Very proud of myself on that. lol
You can view the full interview video on our FaceBook Page.
The hostess for Deck the Runway was actress Elise Neal. I remember watching her in the 90's sitcom The Hughleys, as well as many movies such as the Marvel movie Logan. :) I was excited at the thought of possibly meeting her, and NEEDED to get a selfie with the hostess. :)
With hostess Elise Neal :D
Another celebrity that was attending the show was America's Next Top Model, Erin Green! 0___0 I LOVED her season on ANTM, and couldn't believe Erin Green would be one of the models for the runway. :D
With America's Next Top Model, Erin Green. <3
Watching Ms. Green on the runway was an emotional experience. :) I snuck out from backstage to sit with my husband for one of her walks on the runway.
I only have one word..... QUEEN!!!! <3
Not only did I get to share this event with my supportive husband, but I was also able to bring my best friend of 25+ years with us. :D We left Canada on December 12th, and booked a week in Orlando. We planned on taking in a night at Medieval Times, Epcot, Universal Studios, Holiday Matsuri (anime convention), and do a little shopping. :)
Throughout the evening, I was able to meet and network with so many wonderful designers. :) Everyone was so very welcoming, and even surprised when they'd hear I traveled all the way from north country of Canada. By the end of the night, I made a lot of great connections, and now have a list of Florida models that I can contact next time I'm in the State for a collaboration. :)
Deck the Runway was a truly wonderful experience! I hope to be able to return again for another season.
Here I am with the director for Deck the Runway, Francesca Watson. :) This lady is a force to be reckoned with! <3
Here is the video that my husband took from the audience. :)
And, here's a video from Vumedia Group from Deck the Runway. Here you can see teasers from behind the scenes, red carpet interviews, and the runway. :)
Vumedia Group was also one of photographers that was on site at the show, and here are some shots from the runway. :) There's more photos available on our FaceBook Page.
And finally, your designer! <3 <3 <3
And I'm just going to toss in a few selfies that I took with some of my beautiful models backstage. I wish I had gotten more selfies with the girls, but as always it's INSANELY hectic backstage at shows. :)
A huge shoutout to all my models for killing it on the runway! <3
That wraps up another blog! :D
It's so hard to believe that 2019 will be over in just a matter of days, and so much good has happened for East Coast Couture. :D
Stay tuned for our final blog of 2019 ~ Our Year In Review ~