LRFW 2013 Model of the Year is Tiffany Cross of Little Rock, Ark. A college graduate of University of Central Arkansas, Cross has aspired to model for a sometime. She received her first modeling opportunity at LRFW 5 (2013).
“I felt great [when I was announced the winner],” says Cross. “It’s good to know the work to being a good model didn’t go unnoticed.”
Last May, over 400 models auditioned to be in LRFW 5. Some aspiring models traveled as far as Mississippi, Tennessee, Missouri and Texas for a chance to be in “America’s Favorite Fashion Experience.” 90 models were selected by a panel of judges that included local celebrities, boutique owners and journalists.
The LRFW Youth Fashion Sketch Design Competition is divided up into three categories: Grades first through fifth, sixth through eighth, and ninth through twelfth.
The winners receive a sketch book from Savannah College of Art and Design School of Fashion; passes to tour exhibits at William J. Clinton Presidential Library, LRFW merchandise, and VIP access for the entire week during LRFW 6.
The winner of the elementary school division is Madison Harper of Scott, Ark. Six year old Madison’s first time win makes her want to enter the competition again. When asked how she felt, she replied “Happy.”
The winner of the middle school division is Madeline Gassaway of Sherwood, Ark. and the winner for the high school division is Remi Hodges, of Maumelle, Ark. Hodges is a senior at Maumelle High School.
“I entered last year, and I was a finalist,” said Hodges. “But when I heard my name [this year], it felt like I stopped breathing."
Hodges has participated in LRFW for four years and looks up to Betsey Johnson for inspiration as an aspiring fashion designer. Finalists are invited to one of LRFW’s premiere shows. The winners are announced in front of a live audience.
Love R.O.C.S., owned by fashion designer Shonda Ali-Shamaa of Conway, Ark., is LRFW 2013 Clothing Line of the Year.
“There were so many great designers,” said Ali-Shamaa. “It’s exciting to watch my logo show up on my phone announcing that my line won.”
For Ali-Shamaa, 41, her desire to create beautiful clothing for women began as a young girl, gathering scraps from her mother’s sewing projects and hand stitching dresses for her Barbie doll.
A University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff graduate, Ali-Shamaa has worked several successful years in accounting and engineering. Other proud accomplishments of hers include raising her two children with her husband. Last year, frustrated with her inability to find stylist pants for tall women and clothes to suit her style, Ali-Shamaa focused on pursuing her life-long aspiration of being a fashion designer. She enrolled at the Arkansas Fashion School. This was Ali-Shamaa’s first showing of Love R.O.C.S. at LRFW.
The winners of the LRFW Model of the Year and Clothing Line of the Year are voted on by members of the media, fashion industry insiders, VIP guests, and winners from the previous year and corporate sponsors whom all attend LRFW and critiqued individuals’ work. Fashion designer Denis Antoine, of the SCAD School of Fashion, was a chief evaluator. LRFW Youth Fashion Sketch Design Competition applicants’ drawings are evaluated by fashion school educators, boutique and department store managers.
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