MoDA Runway 2019 opened with a captivating Cirque du Soleil-inspired ballet performance led by dance savant, Kerry-Ann Henry.
The emotive piece, which also featured a contortionist, an aerial silk acrobatics duo, and young dancer-gymnasts Sahai and Solae Panton whet our appetites just enough to appreciate a vibrant start to the runway show led, by Trinidadian fashion designer, Claudia Pegus.
Her collection, she notes, was inspired by her love for Jamaica—now her biggest market— the vibe of the island and a desire to bridge couture with classic Caribbean elegance.
See gallery below with pieces from the Claudia Pegus collection
Venezuelan-American designer and artist, Lisu Vega, known for her sustainable and contemporary style, followed suit with a sea of equally bright and beguiling pieces, complete with wearable art from her recent Rope Project. She, too, emerged to rousing applause.
See gallery below with pieces from Lisu Vega
Up next was New York-based celebrity stylist and luxury resort wear designer, Carlton Jones, who is no stranger to Jamaica’s shores. He was particularly excited to share with BUZZ that this year’s collection is his first-ever with his own textile designs.
Movement was a foremost feature of his collection, which he shared, was inspired by life in the tropics with metropolitan flair.
See gallery below with more pieces from the Carlton Jones collection
KimmysticClo by Kimone Batiste represented for St Vincent & the Grenadines with her shirt dress-inspired collection.
The concept started with a clean-cut, white shirt dress and mushroomed into the beautiful, breathable natural fabrics —linen and cotton— we saw floating down the runway, reminding us to merge comfort with fun and style.
See gallery below with more pieces from the KimmysticClo collection
By far the collection that raised the most eyebrows, were designed by Joshua Christensen, who jetted in from Detroit, Michigan, ready to push the envelope with his nature and fantasy-themed line.
He told BUZZ that he believes menswear should not only be about form and structure, but also uniqueness, comfort and playfulness, as there are rigid views of masculinity that fashion, as an artform, is perfectly poised to challenge. His presentation had looks for varying occasions, from casual to editorial, including the much-talked-about men’s rompers.
“Menswear should not only be about form and structure, but also uniqueness, comfort and playfulness”— Joshua Christensen
Liberian-born MoDA fave and Project Runway finalist, Korto Momolu, delivered yet another spicy collection, this time with both traditional and Afro-futurist nods. The message of which, she pronounced, was ‘let your clothes love you’.
Her pieces embraced the core of her culture while incorporating flirtatiousness and vivacity, perfect for the young progressive African woman and any other woman who doesn’t wish to be boxed in or overly defined.
Local designer Andre Stephens set the bar high with a grand entrance — traditional African drumming and an accompanying dancer— for his menswear line which certainly lived up to the fanfare.
His Premiere Gentleman collection, which was opened by stylist/model BootlegRocstar, the designer shared, was a call to Jamaicans and the African diaspora to awaken and take their true place in the world as royalty, embracing opulence and confidence as their birthright.
Tortola, BVI based line Kym’Asia by Germain Smith closed the show with black and white, pageant-inspired pieces reflecting the theme of emerging from darkness into light.
Smith told us he wanted to represent his personal journey in an uplifting, elegant way. It, too, was well-received.
See gallery below with more pieces from the Kym’Asia line.
All models were adorned with make-up by Black Radiance and Blow by Blow coiffure.
Enjoy some more highlights from the show…
Entertainment led by Kerry-Ann Henry
Patrons striking a pose on the Grey Goose runway
More highlights from the MoDA Runway
— Tami Tsansai