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The Nashville Fashion Forward Fund Gala To Celebrate Nashville’s Creative Community On Closing Night of Nashville Fashion Week

The Nashville Fashion Forward Fund Gala To Celebrate Nashville’s Creative Community On Closing Night of Nashville Fashion Week

The Nashville Fashion Forward Fund of the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee and co-chairs Kimberly Lewis and Gen Sohr invite you to celebrate and support the entrepreneurial spirit of Nashville’s creative arts and fashion community at the fourth annual Nashville Fashion Forward Fund Gala on Saturday, April 8 at Track One in the burgeoning Wedgehood Houston area. The Fashion Forward Gala is the culmination of Nashville Fashion Week’s five day celebration featuring local, regional and national designers and industry professionals in an array of creative events throughout the city. The Gala will be designed and coordinated by AmosEvents.

Nashville Fashion Week is excited to announce that Butch Spyridon, President of the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corp, will speak to the importance of the arts and creativity as a cornerstone of the Nashville economy. Natalie Chanin, founder and creative director of Alabama Chanin, will be the guest speaker for the evening followed by a musical performance by singer-songwriter Shelly Colvin

“I am honored to be included in this event. Fashion has become the next step in the creative “thread” that speaks to Nashville’s unique and authentic offerings,” Spyridon said.

Nashville Fashion Week will present its third Nashville Fashion Forward Awards at the Fashion Forward Gala to recognize community leaders that have made an impact on the Nashville fashion industry. Sandra Lipman is the 2017 Nashville Style Icon. Awards will also be presented for the Fashion Forward, Legacy, Face of Fashion (sponsored by Picture Booth), Rising Star (sponsored by The Mall at Green Hills) and Point of View (sponsored by Tito’s Handmade Vodka) recipients at the event. 

Butch Spyridon
Natalie Chanin
Shelly Colvin

“All of us at Alabama Chanin are so honored and excited to be participating in Nashville Fashion Week. It has been wonderful watching the industry unfold, connect creative individuals, and flourish in our communities. It has only just begun,” says Chanin.

In 2013, Chanin won the CFDA/Lexus Eco-Fashion Challenge, an award competition that identifies and celebrates the greatest American designers working in the realm of sustainable fashion. Chanin continues to learn and to teach craft traditions, using them to bridge generational, economic, and cultural gaps. Steluta will host an Alabama Chanin Lifestyle Pop Up Show featuring collection pieces and home goods curated by Alabama Chanin on April 1-9 in their East Nashville boutique. 

“Nashville Fashion Week has grown to have a significant impact on young designers, and the industry as a whole is paying attention. It’s an honor to sit on their advisory council during this exciting time, and I’m especially thrilled to perform at this year’s gala, where my friend Natalie Chanin will be speaking,” Colvin says.

Colvin has written and recorded two full-length albums, and collaborated with numerous artists on stage and off including John Prine and The Black Crowes. Shelly is featured in the critically acclaimed music documentary Heartburn Highways Revisited and has performed at many festivals and historical venues including Bonnaroo, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival, Stagecoach, Lincoln Center and was most recently a featured artist at Dylan Fest at the Ryman Auditorium.

Individual tickets to the Gala can be purchased for $200, tables of 10 for $2,000, and sponsored tables for $2,500 at and includes The Gala Late Party. Others can join the festivities following the awards ceremony at 10 p.m. Late Party tickets are $50.

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. All proceeds from Nashville Fashion Week 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.