Survival of the Chicest

Spring fashion showdown at the MOA.

by Sally Hedberg

WHAT: MNfashion Spring Style Dash

WHEN: Noon to 2 p.m., Saturday

WHERE: Mall of America, Nordstrom Court, 60 E. Broadway, Bloomington

COST: Free

Americans have an obsession with makeovers. Look no further than popular reality television: âÄúThe Biggest Loser,âÄù âÄúDr. 90210,âÄù âÄúWhat Not to Wear.âÄù The mainstream aesthetic holds a high standard of beauty and theyâÄôll be damned if they canâÄôt tweeze, wax, augment body parts and shop until theyâÄôve morphed the most unattractive human being into a class-A hottie.

Lucky for you, penny-pinching cable-less lovers of the ugly duckling transformation, this Saturday at Mall of America, MNfashion will combine all of our favorite fashion-centric reality show parts into one live makeover/styling challenge: the Spring Style Dash.

âÄúThis is the first year the event has run,âÄù style editor of Metro Magazine and co-host of the event Mary OâÄôRegan said. âÄúMNfashion wanted to bring more awareness of spring fashion week to the general public. A lot of people think itâÄôs an insider event, but thatâÄôs not the case.âÄù

OâÄôRegan, along with MOA trend specialist Sara Rogers, will host the event, adding their fashionista input as stylists work with the five contestants to create three fashion-forward spring looks that will culminate in a runway show. The winner of the contest will receive a piece of local couture and VIP passes to spring MNfashion Week. An audience member will win passes too.

ItâÄôs hard to say what fashion-forward looks will end up showcased on the runway, but both fashion-expert hosts agree on whatâÄôs going to be hot this spring: the âÄô70s.

âÄúIâÄôm thrilled about the wide leg pant,âÄù Rogers said. âÄúIt counterbalances curves and is just so sexy.âÄù

In addition to providing entertainment for the event-goers, another important aim of âÄúSpring Style DashâÄù is to build awareness of local fashion events amongst a broader demographic.

Local organization MNfashion has made huge strides in the realm of production quality in local fashion events, but itâÄôs still somewhat under-the-radar for people outside the immediate community. Meaning, unless you make it a point to diligently follow local fashion, it can be tricky to know when things are happening.

With spring MNfashion Week fast approaching, (April 11 through 17) they hope to reach out to those who maybe havenâÄôt partaken in local fashion happenings, or perhaps were intimidated by them. The fashion scene in Minneapolis can definitely give off the air of an exclusive club, but when it comes down to it, itâÄôs not.

âÄúThat is exactly what we donâÄôt want it to be,âÄù OâÄôRegan said. âÄúEverybody is welcome with open arms to these events. The designers want people to know about them, and the shows are amazing. You feel like youâÄôre in New York. ItâÄôs meant for everyone. The best thing that can happen is that more people can find out about it.âÄù