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Southern Design Week showcases regional designers

New York, LA, Miami, New Orleans -- we all have our local designers.

Southern Design Week, formerly known as NOLA Fashion Week, wrapped up Sunday evening. On Friday night, guests gathered to see the work of the three young Southern designers -- Amber Perley, Reneka Thomas and Annie Etzel -- at the Old New Orleans Rum Distillery, which was transformed into a runway showcasing the designers' fashions. Local artisans also showcased their work in between shows. Some of the others included designer, Amanda DeLeon, curator of handcrafted suits, Fellow, Renu Jewelry, and Small Change Finery. Southern Design Week is the brainchild of Andi Eaton, designer of Hazel & Florange.

“I’m most excited about the quality of work that the designers have put out. Working with NOLA Fashion Week for the last three and a half years, the garment construction and the quality of work has continued to improve, and that’s what’s been an exciting thing to see, is designers really coming to the table with conceptual work, strong business plans to get their lines off the ground, and I think that’s amazing,” Eaton says.

Why the name change?

Eaton says the new name is more representative of what they want to accomplish.

“The name change came from wanting to expand the focus of the actual designer, the production of the garments, the process of design, and the other components all go into a designer being able to launch their line. Also, we have designers showing from Tennessee, Florida, Georgia, Texas, and one from New York is looking to engage customers in the South. We wanted to have a more expansive reach than just New Orleans.”

A fashion show is obviously nothing without its visuals, so here’s a look at the evening in photos:

Summer Suleiman is a health writer and blogger who writes about her experience living healthy (or trying to) in a city best known for its fabulous (unhealthy) food and debauchery. You can read about her journey saying no to po’boys and Sazeracs, and yes to kale and juicing, at www.HealthySummer.me or on Twitter @summersuleiman.