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Envision celebrates 10 years as one of highlights of Fashion Week MN

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Envision has been around for almost 10 years. Let that sink in a minute. In the Twin Cities, where interest in local fashion waxes and wanes, that’s a pretty big deal. We’ve seen a few Fashion Weeks come and go, but Envision sticks around.

Over the decade, quite a bit has changed. The show has become much more polished and professional, and the crowd who gathered Saturday night was a mix of the old local fashion guard and younger, fresher faces who probably have no idea what Voltage was.   

Eight designers and one local boutique, Cliché, presented collections during the evening, which was hosted by the very charismatic John Mark, a local choreographer and former Ignite model.

Jenny Carle showed a pretty, prim line of separates in navy and pink hues inspired by Clueless and Valley of the Dolls. Her pencil skirts and skinny pants fit well, and a jumpsuit with a lace-up top was a collection highlight. If Minneapolis had debutantes, they’d be into Jenny Carle’s looks. Joleen Torvick was inspired by agates. She created her own prints by layering fabrics to mimic the rock’s multi-dimensional aspects. Her collection was beautifully made in shades of taupe, navy, and orange, and the floaty silk dresses and the T-shirt jumpsuit were highlights. Torvick’s line also featured culottes, which have apparently made a comeback.

Hiccup by Handley seems to be a relative newcomer to the local fashion scene. “I pictured a pool party in the '60s at some podunk hotel,” she said of her inspiration via video. The line offered a few swimwear looks as well as a pretty melon-hued maxi dress. The colored hair trim on her pieces was distracting, but the styling was very cute and cheeky.  Russell Bourrienne is a local fave. While his collection of menswear isn't necessarily something the downtown skyway crowd would wear, the pieces were impressively constructed. A blue raincoat looked so polished it could’ve been taken off the rack at a store.

KJUREK, a longtime Envision participant, showed hand-dyed knitwear in earthy dark colors, with a few pieces in a bright, malachite green. The line was very festival-season hippie girl, from the leather fringe details to the pom-pom trim. It would be nice to see something new from Kjurek just for a change of pace, though.

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A line called Form Over Function featured both men’s and women’s pieces with a streetwear vibe. Several garments were constructed with seatbelts, giving us flashbacks to those handbags from the ‘00s. The collection itself was a bit dated, but its designer definitely has talent and potential to do great work. Cliché’s segment is always a highlight. “Envision gives us a chance to be not only a store, but to show what our vision is in a more creative way,” said owner Josh Sundberg. Models wore springy outfits in pale blue, nude pink, and bright emerald green, and the prim shirt-dresses in buttercup yellow and royal blue were definite standouts. The white pillbox hats and sunglasses that finished off the looks made everything look cohesive, which isn’t always easy when you’re styling off the rack.

Cory Allen’s collection, inspired by the desert and Roy Rogers, was an audience favorite. His pale blue and sandy-colored menswear were insanely well-done, and a melon-colored jacket with a painted palomino on the back was a standout piece from the show. (The Speedo-style swimsuit with horses on the backside was also a standout, for obvious reasons.)

Designer Emily Trevor closed out the show with her beautiful pieces. Trevor spent over 100 hours pleating and sewing sequins on the finale dress, a pale blue gown with a sequined skirt and sequined bustier details. A pale purple Mongolian lamb jacket was another audience favorite, as was her lace jersey-style dress with sequined “76” detailing. Everyone loves pastels for spring, and Trevor’s collection hit the nail on the head with its sparkling femininity.

The show started right on time — a blessing in the fashion world — and though it could’ve done without the 30-minute intermission, everything moved smoothly. Envision has become the “big event” of our Fashion Week, and it definitely stepped up to the challenge this year.