Model Behavior

Kansas City Fashion Week gets ready to strut its stuff.

Story by Kathryn Greene

From the iconic shops that once lined Petticoat Lane to being the home of Nelly Don—the best-selling and biggest dress designer of the 20th century—Kansas City has always been one fashionable town. The latest chapter in KC’s storied fashion history? Kansas City Fashion Week.

After a preview at Independence Center Sept. 19 and a rooftop runway show Sept. 23, KCFW gets off to a stylish start Sept. 24 at the Sprint Fairway Hall inside Union Station where 28 designers will present their collections in womenswear, luxury resort wear and children’s clothing. The much-anticipated show is the culmination of six months of planning by KCFW President Teisha Barber.

L: Kansas City Fashion Week President Teisha Barber.

“A lot of people wonder ‘Why would I want to go to a fashion show?’” Barber says. “‘I’m not going to be able to purchase anything, it’s too expensive.’”

While many fashion shows have luxury price tags to go along with the merchandise, collections at KCFW hit a range of affordable price points. The best part? “If you’re going to buy something from one of these designers, it’s either going to be one-of-a-kind or made in limited quantity,” Barber notes. “It’s not going to be something that’s just hanging in the store that 20 other people are going to potentially be wearing the next time you go somewhere.”

Newly added to this year’s event lineup is a cocktail party and resort wear runway show by the pool atop the Power & Light District’s new luxury high-rise, One Light. Another can’t-miss element? The first-time collaboration between resort wear and caftan designer Alicia Janesko, and her sister, jewelry designer Jennifer Janesko. Both have previously shown at KCFW, albeit individually.

“The audience is in for a surprise,” Barber says.

Just like anything else in this city of ours, KCFW wouldn’t be a Kansas City fête if it didn’t have its own unique aspect. What sets this show apart from other fashion weeks, according to Barber, is the party atmosphere. “It’s a mix of attendees from age 15 all the way up to 70. It’s a great evening for people to go out to dinner and then come to the show.”

After six months of castings, designer interviews and applications, it all comes to a tranquil climax for Barber when the lights dim for the first show.

“When the first designer has their first model walking … that’s when I just know that everything we have done for past six months has all come together—everything is going to be perfectly fine,” Barber says.

Forget fine—with Kansas City Fashion Week’s designer lineup and sponsors like Sunflower Dermatology and Independence Center, there’s no way it could be anything but fabulous.

Kansas City Fashion Week  |  Spring/Summer 2016 Collections


When: September 19-27, 2015

Where: Union Station

Designers: Paulie Gibson, Jessica Lynn Collins, Laura McGrew, Redeux Kids, House of Cochon and more.

The After-Party: Hotel Phillips

Beats By: DJ Goodzilla

Teisha’s Kansas City Fashion Week Must-Haves:  Fair & Fashionable BB Cream, and J’Adore Dior perfume