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Many consider fashion to be a female-focused industry. You can argue it either way — but Dwight Carter and the team behind Gent won’t waste their time debating: they’re too busy preparing for the 4th Annual Gent Fashion Week, scheduled to kickoff this evening, lasting through the weekend.
Gent is a fashion experience that began in St. Louis. Appealing to the “fashionisto,” Gent Fashion Week, showcases fashion and lifestyle brands aimed at men’s design, style and attitude.
Now in its fourth year, Gent Fashion Week in St Louis, is an emerging platform for local designers to take the lead in the expanding men’s fashion industry. Founder Dwight Carter’s vision is to build Gent into a nationally recognized brand, known by industry leaders and fashionistos alike.
From Design Competitions to Fashion Designers
Before founding Gent, Carter had already made a name for himself in events in Saint Louis. His career after college began in PR where he produced grand openings for salons, boutiques and local establishments. But his particular interest in the St Louis fashion industry piqued when he helped Jeff and Mary Clarke at Mother Model Management create a show, producing a designer competition as part of their model search.
Project:Design! was the first incarnation of the competition. Initially part of Saint Louis Fashion Week, the show highlighted emerging designers in the Midwest, and started to gain a following of its own as was eventually rebranded as Pins and Needles.
After running Pins and Needles for several years, Dwight began brainstorming with local artists Paulie Gibson and Michael Drummond about producing a male-dedicated fashion show.
Thus, the idea of Gent was born – along with the ambition to grow the event into a full men’s fashion week.
The City Front and Center
Celebrating four years, the organizers have expanded the week long showcase with a variety of new events.
Gent Fashion Week 2018 includes a partnership with Max Magazine, along with the Gent’s Barber Battle that goes beyond dress fashion to embrace the talents of grooming.
Local-based designers Shan Keith, Paulie Gibson and boutique OSO Style Lab (representing brands Religion, VIDL, Undercoat and Upcycled) will be participating. Complementing the runway show will be style commentary as a way to educate and inform the audience about the trends they’re seeing.
Partnering with 2B Residential, the new developers at the Encore at Forest Park, it’s not just a chance to discover male fashion designers but also see the change happening within the City of Saint Louis, firsthand.
Gent Fashion Week Schedule
Be sure to learn more about the kickoff event, menswear fashion show, men’s pop up boutique and barber battle on the official site for Ezra Brooks Presents: Gent Fashion Week.
Thursday, March 1 – Kickoff Party at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse in Clayton
Friday, March 2 – Fashion Show – Ezra Brooks Presents Gent Fashion Week, at Encore at Forest Park
Saturday, March 3 – Pop Up Shop at Urban Chestnut Brewing Company (The Grove)
Sunday, March 4 – Barbershop Battle at The Ready Room
And stay on the lookout for the 10th anniversary of Pins and Needles happening later this fall!