Presented by the powerhouse fashion platform Sincerely Ritchurd, the Warmest Winter is a chance to showcase aspiring artists whose threads exude that unmistakably Chi bravado and swagger. Housed in the opulent Persona Lounge, the venue is remarkably designed. A Sincerely Ritchurd banner underlit with rosy hues precedes a concrete runway that is lined by a red velour barrier separating the models from the VIP guests in the front row. Right behind them are countless fans, friends, and family here to show up and show out.
Electricity and good vibes float throughout the room as the lyrical conscious sounds from DJ Vic Lloyd begin to battle with the vibrant energy of the crowd. But soon, the DJ catches the break loop on a 90s throwback, accelerates the tempo through a flash forward to modern trap and the collective chatter slows down as the IG stories are thrown up.The Warmest Winter is about to begin.
First on the stage is a brand whose excellence is immediately evident, Originally Greater (OG). Born from the self-actualization that we were all destined for more, OG is a line of hoodies and streetwear with a fashionably approachable aesthetic. The dark grey and black sweaters are adorned with electric blues and reds. The models rock the fit with grace despite the dozens of cameras flashing in their face.
Shortly thereafter, OG is followed by a low-key, cozy brand by the name of Napps. Full-time designer and part-time dreamer, John Napps built the brand from an issue all overworked creatives have; we need more Napps! His line of hoodies, pillows, and blankets all sport playful pastels to help you make the most of a third of your life. The sleepy brand is soon followed by a transformative one in UnderConstruction. Inspired by the bountiful construction sites and signs around the city, Under Construction is a line that mimics human character, always growing, changing, tearing itself down and building anew. Abrupt patterns of patches on the flannels and faded jeans explore a delightfully expressive, experimental aesthetic, plus the models stunt a bit as they slow pace on the runway to give you a long look at what they’re working with.
All throughout the show we have the pleasure of being hosted by the undeniably dope Portia King. She captures and commands the room, keeping our energy elevated in between calculated transitions. The whole evening goes off without a hitch, and Ms. King keeps the crowd lit.
The final artist to grace the stage is the Milwaukee duo behind Unfinished Legacy. Unfinished legacy is a non-conforming, question inducing brand that boasts both craft and intent. Their white butterfly jeans challenge what constitutes male fashion while being temptingly beautiful. Their all black crew with the yellow words “Genius from the Hood” are self-explanatory. The Milwaukee duo’s clothing is as boisterous and brilliant as the Chicagoan spirit.
The talent within this showcase is not to be understated. Every artist here put their city on their shoulders and showed them what’s what. Sincerely Ritchurd truly cultivated a show for the ages, a show you had to be at to understand, and if you didn’t know, well, now you know.
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