Kansas City Fashion Week: On the Catwalk with Topping Designs

by - May 10, 2019

Photo by Eli Stack

This was not a piece designed to sit in; it was designed to be powerful and empowering.

Without models, designer Duane Topping believes his clothes cannot come to life. In the fashion industry, models can be seen as just hangers for a designer’s clothing. Because of this, this exceptional designer goes to great lengths to make his models feel like family and treat them as just as important as his clothes. 

He opened the Thursday night show for KCFW with a ton of energy, passion, and belief in his models' abilities to make his collection shine.

Photo by Eli Stack // Model (standing) Maria Savoy

Photo by Eli Stack
This was the first KCFW that I auditioned for remotely by submitting photos and a video of my walk instead of attending the open casting call. Because I wasn't in Kansas City in the weeks leading up to the show, correspondence with my designers consisted solely of emails. I didn't even know what I was wearing until noon each day.
This was also my first KCFW that my designer booked a photoshoot before the show and I'm so glad he did! These images by Eli Stack are some of my favorite Fashion Week captures ever (and they aren't even on the runway).

Annnd, this was was the first KCFW that I OPENED THE SHOW!! Topping Designs was the first designer for the Thursday night show and I was the first look! Talk about pressure!
Photo by Eli Stack
This garment was one of the tricker pieces I've worn on the runway and it took some serious double-sided fashion tape and some wiggling in the dressing room to get the attached garter and armbands positioned correctly. You can even see Duane himself making some adjustments before a photo on the red carpet a few photos further down.

Photo by Alex Todd

Photos by Cameron Milan Cirino // CMC Photos

Photo by Fabutainment
Photo by Heather Slusher

And because it's always fun to see the process and what's going on behind the scenes, here are some backstage photos, too. When I asked my hairstylist from KC's Bombshells Beauty Crew how many hairpins I'd find in my hair after the show, she said she used an entire can of hairspray to create this 'do and no hairpins.


 And some after the runway shots with my VIP guest in the audience :)


Photo by Alex Todd

Help a girl out! You can vote for your favorite photos from the official photographer galleries on my latest Facebook post. I'll be purchasing the photo with the most likes for my portfolio.

Designer: Topping Designs // Duane Topping Facebook | Website
H/MUA: KC Bombshell Beauty Crew Instagram
Show: Kansas City Fashion Week 

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