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Alabama Chanin

Nashville Fashion Week Presents The 2017 Fashion Forward Awards at The Fourth Annual Fashion Forward Gala


Nashville Fashion Week ended year seven with the fourth annual Nashville Fashion Forward Gala and presentation of the Fashion Forward Awards at Track One on Saturday, April 8. The 2017 Gala, co-chaired by Kimberly Lewis and Gen Sohr, was created to celebrate and support the resolute, entrepreneurial spirit of the Nashville fashion community following the week-long festivities and that it did!

AmosEvents created a dreamy indoor garden party with 2016 NFF recipient Brett Warren’s larger than life fashion photographs centerstage. Butch Spyridon, President of the Nashville Convention and Visitor's Corp, Natalie Chanin, founder of Alabama Chanin and fashion photographer Brett Warren served as keynote speakers of the gala with Shelly Colvin performing two musical selections for the fashionable sold out crowd. The Nashville Fashion Week co-founders, Connie Cathcart-Richardson, Marcia Masulla and Mike Smith presented the awards with sponsors Margaret Ellis Jewelry, and Tito's Handmade Vodka. 

Recipients of the 2017 Nashville Fashion Forward Awards are:

Barrett Ward


Barrett Ward is the founder and CEO of FASHIONABLE, a fashion company with a mission of creating sustainable business opportunities for women. Their products, which include handmade jewelry, premium leather, apparel, and woven goods, are created by women who have overcome extraordinary circumstances, ranging from prostitution to addiction to a lack of opportunity due to poverty. Currently, over 300 women are employed globally because of FASHIONABLE, in areas including Nashville, Ethiopia, Peru, and Mexico.

Sandra Lipman


Native Nashvillian Sandra Lipman is well known across the community as a tireless advocate for community organizations and non-profits. She has strategized and chaired some of Nashville’s most important charitable events over the years, including the Junior League’s Showhouse, Iroquois Steeplechase, Symphony Fashion Show, the first Power of the Purse luncheon for the Women’s Fund of the Community Foundation, the first Frist Gala for the Frist Center, Symphony Ball, Ballet Ball, Cheekwood’s 50th Swan Ball and many more.

David & Ellen Levy

LEGACY AWARD | David & Ellen Levy, Levy’s Clothier

David Levy is fifth generation owner of Levy's, founded in 1855 by his great-great grandfather.  He joined the company in 1977 after the passing of his father, Ralph Z Levy, Sr.  Having grown up in the business, it was only natural that he would lead the company into the 21st century. Levy's has been named continuously to the Gold Standard list of outstanding men's specialty stores since 2001 and been a presenting sponsor of NFW since 2011.

Renae Currey

RISING STAR | Renae Currey | Lucy Pop Salon

Sponsored by Tito’s Handmade Vodka

Renae is a Nashville native and a professional hair and makeup artistwith a special emphasis on translating fashion and runway beauty trends into wearable hair and make up looks for clients in the salon. She started Lucy Pop Salon in 2010, where she continues to work with clients and lead a staff of 18. Her freelance work has been featured in publications like Porter Magazine, Nylon Magazine, and Teen Vogue, and she is an educator for the fashion focused, luxury hair care brand, Kevin Murphy.

Cassie Kelly


Sponsored by

Cassie founded her personal blog in 2012 as a way to connect with and empower women while on the road touring with her husband Charles Kelley from Lady Antebellum. Womanista expanded as a media lifestyle brand in 2015 with contributing writers and bloggers and now has over 7 million unique registered users.

Renee Peters

FACE OF FASHION | Renee Peters 

Sponsored by Margaret Ellis Jewelry

Renee Peters grew up in Nashville, but is now living and working in New York City as a Wilhelmina model and an advocate of sustainable living. She strives to be a role model in all that she does, using her platform for positive change. Her blog Model4GreenLiving seeks to reshape the way people think about environmental issues and to show that it’s cool to care. She uses her social media to send a message of self-love and body-positivity and to encourage mindful, sustainable living. Renee volunteers, is an environmental activist, as well as a budding philanthropist in her free time.

View photographs from the Gala as well as runway shots, back of house sneek peeks and party pics from throughout the week at

Nashville Fashion Week Announces Five Interactive "Learning Labs"

Nashville Fashion Week Announces Five Interactive "Learning Labs"


Nashville Fashion Week is excited to announce a new focus for our 2017 educational experiences. Five separate and distinct fashion-focused “Learning Labs” will take place throughout the week of April 4-8. Nashville Fashion Week is designed to showcase the local fashion community by providing a platform to engage, learn and connect and these unique experiences were developed to do just that.

Mclaine Richardson of Margaret Ellis Jewelry
Edward of Margaret Ellis Jewelry

Margaret Ellis Jewelry Intro to Metalsmithing: Make Your Own Pearl Bangles

Tuesday, April 4 | 1:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Location: 209 10th Avenue South, Suite 309, 37203

Admission: $250 Individual Ticket includes instruction, materials and your own personal set of ME Pearl Bangles (retail value $445). 

Learn to make your very own set of classic ME bronze pearl bangles with the assistance from one of Nashville's most respected local businesses. Margaret Ellis Jewelry utilizes strong shapes and textures to bring new relevance to classic handcrafted designs. Precious metals, individually select pearls and stones form modern and timeless works of art designed to be worn for years to come. ME designer/owner Mclaine Richardson and ME master metalsmiths will help you find your inner creativity and inspiration through the art of jewelry design. Ticket price includes admission and all materials needed to create your choice of a Set of 6 with 2 Pearl Bangles or a Set of 3 with 5 Pearl Bangles during the time of this event at the Margaret Ellis studio.

Waller Law Your Brand, Your Way and How to Protect It

Wednesday, April 5 | 12:00 - 1:30 p.m.

Location: Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis, LLP, Nashville City Center, 511 Union Street, Suite 2700, Nashville 37219

Admission: $25 Individual ticket includes lunch

Protecting your brand is a personal and important development for any business, small or large. Waller is proud to host a Learning Lab panel with Mila Griggs (MODA Image & Brand Consulting), Christopher Lester, Lucas Leverett (Jive! - A Printworks Studio)and Kristen Johns (Attorney, Waller) to discuss this important focal point of any marketing plan for a business. Topics to be discussed will include the necessity of a personal brand story, e-mail extension of a brand, how printed materials can effectively communicate your business, and what steps can be taken to protect a brand’s integrity. Lunch provided by Waller.

Elizabeth Suzann Living Room
Elizabeth Suzann Pape
Elizabeth Suzann Workroom

Elizabeth Suzann Tour A Designer's Studio

Thursday, April 6 | 12:00 - 1:00 p.m.

Location: Elizabeth Suzann | 441 Atlas Drive, 37211

Admission: $30 Individual Ticket. 

Peek inside the world of a local designer. Elizabeth Suzann is a young design company producing elegant, utilitarian women's clothing from its hybrid production facility and design studio. Designer and founder Liz Pape challenges traditional fashion norms and aims to return to the days of cottage industry-style manufacturing and capsule wardrobes with intentional, well-designed, and seasonless pieces.

Elizabeth Suzann's entire line is desined and produced completely in-house - from original sketches to fulfillment. Tour the entire studio with the designers herself and get an in-depth look at one of the local fashion community's most successful companies. One lucky ticket holder will win a $250 gift card.

Chloe Wen How To Make Money Blogging

Saturday, April 8 | 10:00 - 11 a.m.

Location: The Westin Hotel | 807 Clark Place, 37203

Admission: $40 Individual Ticket. 

Have you ever wanted to make money blogging? Local Nashville blogger Chloe Wen left college to become a successful lifestyle blogger and she's hosting a 4-tier educational event for those who wish to learn her craft. She'll walk attendees through the steps of finding your brand, perfecting your pitch, knowing your worth, and working with brands/getting paid. Inspired by passion and love for the city of Nashville, Chloe transitioned her photography business into a successful brand. Learn how you can become a successful blogger. Lite bites provided by Maneet Chauhan.

Chloe Wen Hall

Alabama Chanin
Natalie Chanin of Alabama Chanin
Alabama Chanin

ALABAMA CHANIN Intro To Hand Sewing Workshop

Saturday, April 8 | 10 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Location: Aurora Nashville | 150 3rd Avenue South, Suite 108, 37201

Admission: $225 Individual Ticket includes materials, instruction stories & laughter. 

Introduction to Hand Sewing Workshop includes discussion of the physics of sewing, reverse applique, and an overview of garment construction and other Alabama Chanin techniques. This workshop is suited to beginners and experienced sewers alike. Work with the Alabama Chanin Team to create a custom DIY item. Lite bites provided by The Southern Steak & Oyster.

NFW Learning Labs are underwritten in part by Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis, LLP and Middle Tennessee State University Textiles, Merchandising and Design.

Tickets for each “Learning Lab” can be purchased at Reservations are required. Proceeds from all Nashville Fashion Week events benefit the Nashville Fashion Forward Fund of the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee. The Nashville Fashion Forward Fund is an endowed fund established to support the next generation of fashion industry professionals with ties to Middle Tennessee by providing a financial award and resources for experiential professional development opportunities. 

Nashville Fashion Week will be held April 4-8 at unique locations throughout the city. Runway and All Access Passes as well as tickets to individual events are now available in a wide range of prices.