Tuesday night saw a dramatic shift in the goings-on at U.S. Embassy Skopje, as talk of multilateral diplomacy was replaced by jazz music and catwalk charisma at the first runway show to be hosted in this venue. And I hope that it will not be the last! Collaboration between the American Embassy, Fashion Weekend Skopje (FWSK), and the Macedonian Fashion Formation (MFF) resulted in an exciting display of talent and creativity featuring the jazz-themed pieces of thirteen Macedonian designers.
The line-up consisted of fashion designers Vedrana Paneva, Ivana Cvetkovska, Nikola Eftimov, Iskra Dzokic, Melani Dimitrovska, Nevenka Todorovska, Tresor, Sara Milevska, Robert Ivanovski, Irena Petrovska, Aleksandra Krninova, Victor Cvetanovski, and jewelry designer Elena Popovska, each of whom was selected upon application to an open call.
The theme of the evening was the crucial thread that served as both a unifying factor for the range of designs as well as a broad source of inspiration. While some designers incorporated elements of jazz music into their pieces (think black and white patterning reminiscent of piano keys, or velvet lounge-singer chic), others turned to the Roaring Twenties and the iconic flapper muse straight out of a Jay Gatsby cocktail party. As Ambassador Wohlers noted in his opening remarks, the 1920s in America marked an important turning point for women, for whom fashion was as much a declaration of independence as it was a canvas for self expression. The spirit of the era was well captured by Jazz & Fashion’s tribute at FWSK, as bob-coiffed models strutted swingy tassels, fur accents, and decadent floor-length evening wear.
After months of hard work and careful planning, I am pleased to conclude that the show was a grand success and a true joy to work on. Guests included Macedonian President Ivanov, various ministers, fashion and textile industry members, investors, heads of diplomatic missions, prominent business people, Chambers of Commerce and media personalities. The event was covered by media both local and national, and even highlighted as far away as India, where media featured the show’s opening dress by Aleksandra Krninova. However, the real triumph of the evening, in my opinion, was the visible promotion of Macedonia’s vibrant fashion and jewelry industry and the opportunity for emerging talent to showcase designs alongside pieces by more experienced and established designers.
A hearty congratulations and many thanks to all who participated! I look forward to the continued realizations of these artists’ visions, and I will be the first to applaud as they carry on exceeding the limits of the creatable.
:: A femme fatale neckline and stately sleeves from Aleksandra Krninova ::
:: Springtime hues and feminine detailing from Victor Cvetanovski ::
:: Dramatic face nets and bold metallic statements from Robert Ivanovski ::
:: A shimmering silhouette and center-stage décolletage from Nevenka Todorovska ::
:: Intricate and shapely mermaid flounces from Tresor ::
:: A sequin-sheathed modern twist on Daisy Buchanan from Vedrana Paneva ::
:: Musical asymmetry from Irena Petrovska accented by a double-stranded Elena Popovska choker ::
All photos courtesy Fashion Weekend Skopje