On Sunday I had the pleasure of attending the Ricky Da’Vista 5th Annual “Xperience” the Trendy Walk Fashion Show Gala which featured Project Runway season 11 designer Layana Aguilar. This is my recap.
Ricky “Trendy” Da’Vista was already well-known in the Connecticut dancehall circle as the flamboyant wardrobe stylist, promoter and accessory eyewear designer. When he landed his Tuesday gig on WZMX Hot 93.7 giving the ratchet report and reality show recaps, he became one of the most revered and feared radio personalities in the area. Feared because it didn’t matter if you were a friend, foe or stranger, if he caught you looking or acting ratchet you were guaranteed to become the topic of his next broadcast. Revered, because everyone that knows his story knows how passionate and driven he is.
I met Ricky for the first time last Fall and despite my trepidation I was pleasantly surprised at how nice, approachable and humble he actually was. Maybe I met him on a really good day but I was just grateful that I didn’t make his ratchet report. I was also beyond elated when I received the invitation to attend his annual fashion show as part of the press core last week.
The event was held at the Aria Banquet nestled high in the hills of Prospect, Connecticut. The venue was pristine, sophisticated, offered plenty of parking and panoramic views of the surrounding hills. There were three welcome tables, one of which was just for the media (bloggers, photographers, traditional media, etc). We received press badges, were organized (seating, etc.) and guided through the red carpet arrival. As a blogger, I can’t tell you how much times I have attended events where I have had to justify my presence, even with an invitation or have had to wait while someone goes to find someone else around the back so that I could be granted access to an event. It was really welcoming to see personnel and resources dedicated to the media and that our presence was truly valued.
The fashion show started at 8:30, instead of the advertised 8:00 pm. However, unlike other events that I have attended, I didn’t notice the late start because there were 100’s of people to air kiss (it was very well attended event), a stocked and proper bar, outfits to covet, vendors to visit and really excellent food to munch on. All of these things pretty much kept me preoccupied until the lights dimmed and the emcee, the lovely Kristin Campbell [@lamodetique] made her appearance wearing an original, peach floral applique, convertible dress designed by the team at Vice Versa Boutique in Hartford.
The show started with a collection of avant garde designs from Heather Nicole Couture followed by presentations from Stacy Lawes, Accessorize You Boutique, Ur Mizery, Salvatore Gianni, Saints by S.J. (Tach) and ended with the collection by featured designer Layana Aguilar. I loved Aguilar’s designs, but my favorite collection of the evening, was the all white collection, controversially named Cocaine by Saints S.J. (Tach) of Connecticut.
The models were confident and the audience, 98% of us anyways, adhered to Ricky’s dress code of wearing what we fear. Although I didn’t like some of the designs or the choice of music (I think chillout lounge music would have been the icing on a very delicious cake) the show did not disappoint. Hands down, this event was one of the best, organized, best attended, group fashion shows featuring emerging designers that I have seen here in Connecticut and New York City for that matter.
Part of the proceeds of the event was donated to the American Lung Association of the Northeast in honor of Da’Vista’s grandmother who died from emphysema.
Da’Vista is currently sh0oting a pilot for his own reality show entitled “The Ricky Da’Vista Project”. I am excited about what the future holds for this Connecticut native.