“Project Runway” designers gather in Benicia for Fashion Runway Weekend, September 16-17, 2016


Benicia, Calif. (August 20, 2015) An ensemble of six designers from the Lifetime series “Project Runway” will be presenting their ready to wear collections on the catwalk during Benicia’s Fashion Runway Weekend, held September 25 and 26.Attendees will get the chance to sip wine and mingle with celebrity designers at one of the most talked about fashion events in the Bay Area.


The new season of “Project Runway” began August 6, so it will be in full swing while stars from past seasons are in Benicia. In the last seven years, the event has featured not only rising star designers, but legends like Patricia Field (costume designer for Sex and the City), Betsy Johnson, and David Dalrymple.


The Designersproject-runway-logo

Back for a third year is “Jersey Boy” Richard Hallmarq, with collections that rocked runways at Fashion Week in New York and San Francisco. Hallmarq’s strict attention to detail, and textile jersey-knit designs, helped get him on the 11th Season of the Emmy-nominated “Project Runway.” Melissa Fleis, who competed on “Project Runway” Season 10 and came back for “All Star 3,” will be storming Benicia with her chic clothing and accessories for the contemporary woman. She has a master’s degree from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, where she studied fashion design. After studying with former Alexander McQueen advisor Simon Ungless at the Academy of Art, Melissa spent her Fall / Winter 2012 season in Lucca, Italy interning under Italian fashion designer Alessandra Marchi.


San Francisco native Emily Payne, from Season 14, will be returning to Benicia with her edgy street-wear label, “Leathertongue,” a perfect union of femininity and strength. Payne’s label has been featured in well-known New York shops, such as American Rag. Season 11’s Stanley Hudsonis known for his dazzling costume design.He has worked on films that include “The Legend of Zorro,”“Mine and Yours,”“Public Enemies,” and most recently,“Lemonade Mafia.”


“Project Runway” season eight (and All Star 3) alum Ari South, is a modern trendsetter with a classic, forward-thinking style. Her line is carried at Neiman Marcus, and can be found next to designs by Alexander Wang and Philip Lim. Presenting sleek and elegant looks this season is Bert Keeter, a Parsons School of Design graduate, and a believer in the “less is more” style. Bert first got national attention on season nine of “Project Runway.”


Those interested in seeing these designers on “Project Runway,” can check out www.mylifetime.com/shows/project-runway/video/full-episodes. Also, here are interviews from last year’s event.


Designer trunk shows are another popular feature of Benicia Fashion Runway Weekend. Enthusiasts of every age and style are invited to explorethe trunk shows, where they’ll find exclusive pieces. There’s also an action-packed runway show, custom fittings, and more.


Film and stage actor Cole Shoemaker will act as emcee of the Saturday night runway event. Cole is a regular on several web series, and has appeared in feature films that include “This Very Moment,”“Takamine,” and “Clockwork Prince.”



Benicia Fashion Runway Weekend Schedule


Friday, September 16, 2016, 6-8 p.m.
Ticket Price: $30


Benicia Fashion Runway Weekend kicks off with a special evening of behind-the-scenes stories by “Project Runway” designers. It’s a rare opportunity to hear first-hand what it’s like to be on the reality fashion showwith Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn. The event is 6-8 p.m. at The Rellik Tavern, located at 726 First Street in Benicia.


Saturday, September 17, 2016, 6-10 p.m.
Ticket Price: $40


This includes all day in-store trunk shows, style demonstrations, and special guest appearances.


  • 6-7 p.m.:Preshow reception, wine,and fashionable tastes. Held at the Treasury of Commons on First and East D streets.


  • 7-8:30 p.m.:Grand Finale Runway Show and Auction, presenting the collections of each of the six designers and Christina S.


  • 8:30-10 p.m.:Shop the night away after the runway show, as stores stay open for the ultimate shopping experience.


Tickets are available at the following locations: Christina S Fashion Destination, 370 First Street; Studio 41, 700 First Street; Benicia Main Street, 90 First Street, and online at www.beniciafashionrunway.com .Or see www.facebook.com/beniciafashionrunway.


Benicia Fashion Runway Weekend is sponsored by Christina S Fashion Destination, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting Soroptimist International of Benicia and their efforts to build a women’s shelter. A donated piece from each designer will be raffled off at the Grand Finale Runway Show.


About Christina S. Fashion Destination
Christina S. Fashion Destination, 370 First Street, has become a Bay Area destination for fashion and style. Featuring international designer clothing and accessories that are exclusive to boutiques, the store hosts frequent trunk shows and special events to showcase the latest trends from around the world.


About Benicia

The waterfront city of Benicia is known for its interesting shops, rich history, vibrant arts community, and beautiful views. It’s estimated that nearly 500 artists are in residence, and their work can be viewed and purchased at the many public and private galleries throughout town, including Arts Benicia, the city’s art center and gallery. Visitors can discover Benicia’s colorful past at the Benicia Capitol State Historic Park, the Benicia Fire Museum and the Benicia Historical Museum at the Camel Barns. The charming, scenic city provides visitors with an array of popular dining options and a variety of downtown boutiques that feature unique merchandise, from the latest seasonal fashions to exquisite gifts.

For details about a Benicia getaway, please check out www.visitbenicia.org. Facebook members are invited to become a fan at www.facebook.com/VisitBenicia.


For more information, please contact Christina Strawbridge at fashfun@aol.com 707-486-2499