Article and Photography by: Peter Salcido
alking through the halls of the Cilker School of Art and Design at West Valley College, creativity was everywhere. The displays of photography and mixed media pieces left me feeling inspired. Tank Shop parked outside the doors, a thrift store selling streetwear and imported goods. Groups of people walked around to take in the beautiful scenery. So many people came out to support their local fashion designers.
This Pick-Up Party had a flare to it. The attire worn to this event was unique to what I typically see at a Pick-Up Party. The outfits were more personalized and self-expressive. Since this party had a fashion show, the space we shared was aligned with showing off individual fashion taste, and I feel like people dressed riskier because of that. I would categorize the overall genre of the evening as streetwear—stylish yet comfortable. The vibe felt young, playful, and vibrant. Brooke wore a flowy dress and sneakers, which was very vintage feeling. Justin wore denim on denim, giving his look a late 80s, early 90s vibe. Melissa and Melik had on more conventional styles but kept it streetwear with grungy plaid and leather pants.
There were a few individuals whose outfits stood out to me the most. I loved Steph’s bootcut black bottoms and fitted top, which reminded me of vintage lace lingerie. I felt it was so well-matched to her personality, attitude, and how she presents herself. Isaac’s outfit had such a unique touch with a bulky custom necklace and fun socks that really elevated his look for the evening. My favorite piece he wore were his purple shoes—cozy yet fashionable. He tied it all in with a jersey texture blouse. Natalia and Katherine with their Dolls Kill vibes lit up the night with vibrant and fun silhouettes. Natalie’s pants were a lime green, baggy, and comfortable cargo style. Her futuristic shoulder flares and midsection jewelry band mixed past and present together. Katherine’s pockets of hot pink teased us, giving 80s Pilates class-meets-lingerie as her fishnet stockings peaked from the top of her pants. She also took bell bottoms to a whole new level, creating a different kind of futuristic design.
For the fashion show, each model gave it their all as they walked down the runway showing off their angles. The designs were nothing short of amazing. Each designer had their own unique style, and it was clear which piece belonged to which collection. They were cohesive in their designs and which garments they chose to showcase. I loved the variety. Some were more business-oriented, like something the modern businesswoman could wear into the office. There were also summer vibes with long gowns that flowed and made the wearer look elegant and soft. I loved the edgy garments as well; they gave me the sense of a modern twist on the Victorian era.
Attending fashion shows here in the South Bay is vital to defining what South Bay fashion style looks and feels like. These are the fashion influencers and trend setters, the ones actively sitting down and designing what the local fashion sense is. I could see the inspiration behind the clothing, from the techie business look to the gilded period influence. All direct reflections of who we are in the South Bay. All in all, I leave you with a question that I’d like you to sit with. What are your clothes saying about who you are? Think about it and see where it takes you on your identity journey. Pay attention to the why and the what so that you, too, can set the trend for the rest of us.
Isaac Farfan @risaacjfarfan
Here are some of the designs from the Cilker School of Art and Design Fashion Show.