Jersey City Fashion Week Returns for Second Year

Jersey City Fashion Week (JCFW) is back starting tomorrow, Sept. 25, through Saturday, Sept. 28.

JCFW is the brain child of Desha Jackson, a local lawyer and philanthropist who wanted to make Jersey City a fashion destination and highlight local businesses and designers while raising money for charity. In its first year, the citywide event raised about $900 each for Dress for Success Hudson County; Boys and Girls Clubs of Hudson County; York Street Project; and STAGES, Art House Productions’ youth theater program.

“Last year we had maybe 500 people coming out between the different shows and events,” says Jackson. “Last year was a good starting point. This year, we’re trying to add some celebrities to the event and work with different charities in the community.”

The festivities start tomorrow, Sept. 25, with an opening night VIP reception at VB3, 475 Washington Blvd. At the event, guests will be able to meet designers and models, see looks from international designers like House of Saudi, as well as celebrate the kickoff of the event. Throughout the week, there will be several fashion shows and events where participants can get special deals at local businesses, see the work of local and international emerging designers, get style tips and more.

Special shows include the Women of Influence show on Thursday, Sept. 26, where prominent local women–including several from the sports world, a move inspired by the Super Bowl coming to New Jersey in 2014–will model looks from designers Gadol and Franklin Rowe. Models include councilwomen Candice Osborne and Diane Coleman; Jennifer Watterman, daughter of Councilwoman At-Large Joyce Watterman; and Sade Benton, daughter of Assemblyman Charles Mainor. Others walking the runway are model and pageant coach Lu Celenia Sierra, actor Justiin Davis and MASN radio personality Anita Marks.

There will also be a children’s fashion show on Friday, Sept. 27 and the grand finale of the week, the Emerging Designer fashion show on Saturday, Sept. 28.

“This year there are a lot more designers from Jersey City,” says Jackson. “This show has a lot of variety. You have high-end designer gowns but also ready-to-wear clothes. I try to open it up and make it appealing to a variety of people of all income brackets. This event is open to everybody–all sizes and shapes, all colors and races.”

She says the show will reflect Jersey City’s own diversity. “Jersey City should be recognized for the flair it has and for what it’s becoming. We have everything from high-end to urbanwear and ready-to-wear…we have different supplies that offer vintage clothing. This is a place people can come shop, enjoy things and find something that fits them.”

Check out a schedule of events below:

  • Opening Night: Meet-and-greet, international designer showcase
    Wednesday, Sept. 25, 6 pm to 10 pm
    VB3, 475 Washington Blvd.
    Tickets: $30 in advance, $40 at the door
  • Featured Stores Event
    Thursday, Sept. 26, 3:30 pm to 11 pm
    Another Man’s Treasure, 353 Grove St.
    Sneaker Room, 267 Central Ave.
  • Women of Influence: Local prominent women model looks by high-end designers
    Thursday, Sept. 26, 6 pm to 10 pm
    Liberty National Golf Club, 100 Caven Point Rd.
    Tickets: $100 in advance, $125 at the door, $150 VIP
  • Children’s Fashion Show
    Friday, Sept. 27, 5:30 pm to 8 pm
    New Jersey City University Student Center, 2039 Kennedy Blvd.
    Tickets: $20
  • Night of Lights: Discounts and special available at participating stores and locations
    Friday, Sept. 27, 8 pm to 12 am
    Hopsscotch, 286 Washington St.
    The Brightside Tavern, 141 Bright St.
    Powerhouse Lounge, 360 Marin Blvd.
    Creative Grove, Grove Street PATH Plaza (Street Wear Fashion Show at 7 pm)
    E. Tittlemouse & Co., 246 Bay St.
  • Style Tips Soiree
    Saturday, Sept. 28, 2 pm to 5 pm
    Hopsscotch, 286 Washington St.
    Tickets: $10 suggested donation
  • Emerging Designer Fashion Show
    Saturday, Sept. 28, 6 pm to 11 pm
    Liberty Science Center, 222 Jersey City Blvd.
    Tickets: $20 in advance, $30 at door, $40 VIP

Disclosure: The Jersey City Independent is a proud media sponsor of this event.

Photo by George RaStarr Walker

Summer Dawn Hortillosa

is a freelance arts and entertainment writer whose work has appeared in the Jersey City Independent, The Jersey Journal, the International and other publications. She is also a creative writer and theatrical director.