Here at the City Paper we pride ourselves on being in the know. We jump at the chance to try new food and drinks (and then some more drinks), attend art openings and networking events, and bounce around to live music all over town. If it’s happening, we’re on it. There is one area that often gets left behind — fashion. Without a designated section in our print paper, the topic of design, style, and other fashion-y stuff just doesn’t pop to the front of our to-write lists. 

So, in honor of fashion week, I’ve designated myself, Connelly — the wearer of coffee-stained jeans three days a week — CP‘s Fashion Week ground girl. Read on for CFW stuff I think is cool and stay tuned for coverage of what fashion week means to an unfashionable chick.

But first … tickets: you can buy package tickets and tickets for each evening’s runway show. For all you ballers on a budget, check out the $20 Style Lounge tickets — this is the first year that individual lounge tickets have been available. These allow you a little peek into fashion week, without actually having to attend a runway show. 

Check out Charleston magazine’s coverage for more in-depth info about local designers.
The magazine started fashion week 10 years ago and they’ve come a long way since then, with emerging designers going on to sell their brands in stores like Anthropologie and Neiman Marcus, and 65 models from the Rock the Runway competition eventually signing with major agencies. Charleston mag’s current issue is stunningly gorgeous (check out the piece on local jewelry designers) and we recommend giving it a look through before hitting the tents. 

Upper Deck does Charleston Fashion Week
Need we say more? On Mon. March 14, Upper Deck kicks off fashion week with a design-your-own-T-shirt event starting at 9 p.m. Supplies will be provided and models and photographers are encouraged to attend. 

MOSA’s Fashion Week Pre-Party
On Tues. March 15 from 5-7:30 p.m., MOSA Boutique hosts a pre-party with Ayoka Lucas, fashion stylist and founder of Charleston Fashion Week. Lucas will be on hand to style clients from 5-6 p.m. There will be mimosas and guests can get 20 percent off all store merch. 

In Support of Pop-Up Shop
In Support Of, a New York-based indie design company, was founded by Tanya Sheikh and Ivan Gilkes in 2014 to showcase independent labels. The two will sit on the fashion panel as judges for the Emerging Designer Competition: East. But you can check out their store’s merch at a pop-up shop all week long held at King Street’s Mitchell Hill Gallery from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tues.-Sat. The launch party (a.k.a. the mix, mingle, sip, and shop event) will be held at Mitchell Hill on Thurs. March 17 from 6-8 p.m.

Rock the Runway features up-and-coming models
Every year Rock the Runway, a model competition, showcases what CFW calls “undiscovered talent,” and this year, for the first time, there will be 10 top female and 10 top male models walking the runway. On Fri. March 18 you can check out these models starting at 6:30 p.m. — who knows, they may be strutting their stuff on a much bigger stage in the near future.

Book signing with creator of New York Fashion Week
Have you heard of Fern Mallis? Maybe not, but surely you’re familiar with the names Tom Ford, Marc Jacobs, Calvin Klein, and Oscar de la Renta. These fashion icons, along with many more big names, were interviewed by Mallis for her new book, Fashion Lives: Fashion Icons with Fern Mallis (Rizzoli). 

Since 2011 Mallis, the creator of New York Fashion Week, has hosted “Fashion Icons with Fern Mallis,” a series of in-depth interviews with the who’s who in the international fashion scene. Her book includes these interviews along with personal photographs provided by the interviewees. If you don’t know that much about fashion, this book could be the perfect gateway drug. And meeting Mallis would be pretty cool too.

Finicky Filly hosts trunk show
From Fri. March 18-Sun. March 20, King Street’s Finicky Filly, a locally owned upscale women’s clothing boutique, hosts a pop-up shop with pieces from designers Fabiana Filippi, Mignonne Gavigan, and Taxidermy. The store will feature exclusive pieces from these designers — ones that Finicky Filliy’s director of digital marketing, Lanie Woods, says you won’t find anywhere else. 

Charleston magazine wrote about taxidermy in its latest issue, delving into the designs of married couple Amy and Asher Driggers. Amy is in charge of Taxidermy, a line of reptile skin handbags, while Asher is the brains behind Grifter, a company that creates bison leather motorcycle gloves, among other badass apparel. If reptilian purses sound cool, then take a deep breath while we tell you this — Beyoncé has been spotted toting one of Amy’s clutches. Oh, yeah.

Artist meet and greet with Daniel Velasco
Art and design come together in the Grand Bohemian’s exhibit, Fashion Inspired: Illustrations & Wearable Art, on view for the duration of fashion week. Meet artist Daniel Velasco on Sat. March 19 from 11 a.m.-2 p.m., whose fashion illustrations are on display in the gallery. The best part? Charleston’s Fat & Juicy will be whipping up Bloody Marys. 

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