Taking place from August 11-16 at the War Memorial in downtown Baltimore, this is the 8th annual production of Baltimore Fashion Week. On August 10 Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake kicked off the event.

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake signals the beginning of Baltimore Fashion Week as Sharan Nixon, founder of the event, looks on. (Photo by Janneh Johnson)

“We have a city full of creative people, and unique people and incredibly talented people and I love this opportunity to showcase all that is in the city, whether it’s hair or fashion Baltimoreans are trendsetters.” said Mayor Rawlings- Blake. “Events like this help us to showcase what is unique abut Baltimore, what is strong about Baltimore, and certainly gives us a chance to make Baltimore look good. There should be no shortage of those opportunities. The rest of the media has done a good job of trying to make us look bad so we have to fight back.”

Sharan Nixon, founder and executive director of Baltimore Fashion Week, feels that the event has a big influence on the city. “The impact that this has in the community is very strong especially in the arts community. Fashion is the center catapult to art so without a fashion week how can you exude the arts,” Nixon said. “The arts don’t get enough recognition which is why I started this”.

The theme of this year’s Baltimore Fashion Week is “Mad about Fashion” and the event will feature over 20 designers, and provide a runway setting for designers to showcase their creations to buyers. A variety of fashion mediums will be displayed at the event including bridal wear, specialty t-shirts, and couture. “This year promises to be interesting,” said Nixon in a statement. “Our theme is Alice in Wonderland because we want to evoke a sense of wonder and magic with our showcase. We want to combine that sense of awe with the majesty of the War Memorial.”

Stylists from across the country will be represented along with designers from right here in Maryland. “This year, we’re going back to our roots in everything from location to our designers,” said Nixon. “We want to bring out our local talent more, and pay homage to the spirit of Maryland. We always love having designers from around the world showcase their designs, but we should also highlight and bring out local artists who deserve a platform.”

Tickets for the event are $30 and the doors open at 6:00 p.m. with shows starting at 7:05 p.m. through Aug. 16.