Touch of Fashion offers designs by professionals, students

The Nevada Association of Fashion Design presented its annual Touch of Fashion Aug. 15 at the Empire Ballroom. It was standing room only for the red carpet event.

The fashion design program offers 232 hours of training through the University of Nevada, Las Vegas Educational Outreach department.

This year’s Bella Fashion Award, which is presented to a Nevadan for his or her example of style, went to John Huck, news anchor at KVVU-TV, Channel 5. The award was presented by master of ceremonies Pete Allman, a television and radio talk show host and sports commentator, and Tara of Stardust Showgirls, a professional showgirl and costume designer.

The main event, a fashion show, featured designs by students and experienced designers.

The show opened with fashions from Tatyana Designs. Tatyana Khomyakova is co-owner and designer for Bettie Page Clothing in the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood.

Khomyakova was born in Russia and graduated from Russia’s University of Culture with degrees in theater and fashion, and began her career at the House of Fashion in St. Petersburg, Russia. She later moved to the United States, and as she grew older, Khomyakova switched from modeling to design.

Among the other designers featured, Nancy Barry and Brittany Taylor showed their design and fashion skills with B Squhair Boutique, featuring trendy clothing and accessories.

Screen printer Lia M., known for her popular Digital Image Graphic Tees, showed them with bikini bottoms for lounging and pool comfort.

Student designers represented included Sherlyn Blaceotto of Joie De Vivre, who hails from Buenos Aires, Argentina. She worked in Argentina, Chile, Mexico and the United States, producing shows for companies such as Chandon Champaign. While in New York, she worked at LolasLolsyLolitos, featuring trendy shoes made in Spain. After graduating this fall from the UNLV fashion program, Blaceotto plans on pursuing a fashion degree in New York.

Nevada resident Vivian Harrison of Vivenna Designs, has a master’s degree in accounting from UNLV and is studying couture and custom tailoring in the university’s fashion design program.

Fashion student Heather Atkinson of Boulder City showcased her apparel line called Crazy Ridiculous for H&J Designs.

Among the instructors participating in the event were Maria Bruce, a fashion sewing teacher and designer with more than 20 years of experience. An owner of a small business licensed as M Bruce Designs, she presented fashions titled Spanish Erotica.

Jennifer Smith offered her line called Vegas Bikini Cafe for the show. She has 15 years of experience as a designer, costumier’s seamstress and patternmaker. Smith also is a fashion instructor specializing in custom swimsuits, lingerie, and sewing and alteration construction.

Victoria Campe is the founder of the Nevada Association of Fashion Design and NAFD Productions.

Gigi Pontejas-Morris is the co-coordinator of the Touch of Fashion event. She also is a fashion designer with Gigi Morris of Las Vegas and is the head fashion instructor for the UNLV Educational Outreach program. In 2005, she founded the Fashion Design Coop of Nevada.

The show’s models and entertainment were provided by McKenna Models and Talent Agency.

Among the performers were Karin Denise and Tiffani Brooks.

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