After a year off, Voltage: Fashion Amplified is back, weaving together its raucous mix of local fashion and live music this Saturday at First Avenue. Tara Murphy, managing director of MNFashion and the show’s producer, says the combination is uniquely Minnesotan.
“Someone once called us the Brooklyn of the Midwest,” Murphy said. “I think we’re a little bit cooler than that. There’s an energy here I’ve not felt anywhere else.”
Now in its eighth year, Voltage focuses solely on local clothing designers and bands to promote Minnesota brands. What’s new this time around? For starters, there’s a new crew working behind the scenes, led by Murphy. The runway extravaganza they’ve put together will feature 16 clothing and jewelry designers. Their looks will be worn by professional models who will walk the runway to music by local bands: Bomba de Luz, Sean Anonymous and Dreamcrusher, Aby Wolf: Wolf Lords and the Chalice.
Some participants look at Voltage as a way to bridge two of the Twin Cities’ most eclectic scenes. Rapper Sean Anonymous said he doesn’t know a lot about fashion, but he’ll be paying close attention Saturday.
“It’s a different scene than I’m used to, and that is real cool to me,” he said. “I’ve always felt like Minneapolis has a pretty vibrant scene for it. Mostly because my friends are always looking fly.”
Voltage designers include eco-fashion label CounterCouture, MBNY Fashion Next winner Lindsey Hopkins and Danielle Everine, a former contestant on TV’s “Project Runway.”
A limited-edition lipstick ($18) made by local cosmetics house the Elixery, will be sold alongside apparel and accessories by Voltage designers. The Elixery will also be doing mini-makeovers. Blush Beauty Room will offer $5 false-eyelash applications.
Voltage returns at a time when both the fashion and music scenes are enjoying their time in the spotlight and gaining national recognition. MTV recently interviewed Murphy and others for a Web series about cities with booming music and fashion scenes. The episode will air in July.
Murphy, who spends ample time in New York, said people are shocked to hear about the creativity in the Midwest. But it’s alive and well, she said. Part of MNFashion’s mission is to create a tolerant and inviting community for artists and designers to live and work.
“It’s more than mukluks and Minnetonka Moccasins,” she said. “It’s more than Fargo chic and it’s time to show the world what the Twin Cities is doing.”
Hair • Charlie Brackney, HAUS Salon,
Makeup • Heath Bryant, HAUS Salon and Blowdry! Blowdry Bar
Model • Kara Gall, Ignite Models
Stylist • Tara Murphy