EBONI fashion show highlights local designers

By Taina Millsap, Living Arts Editor

Emerson students walked the BLK OUT runway in the Lion’s Den, in the midst of technical difficulties and Tik Tok dance competitions during intermission, to celebrate Black History Month.

The third annual BLK OUT fashion show was hosted by Emerson’s Black Organization with Natural Interest, EBONI, Saturday in the Lion’s Den. Designers Nathalia Jmag and Afrocentric designs dressed models in their originals.

Junior Naomi Jones, the executive producer of the fashion show, said this year the organization wanted to plan the event with a message that incorporated everybody’s ideas and to make the show as personal as possible. The student-run event was a way for the organization to celebrate Black History Month which runs from Feb. 1 to Feb. 29.

“The for you by you [concept] is a project for Black History Month in general but we’re trying to implement it into our constitution,” Jones said in an interview. “It’s basically just celebrating the thoughts and ideas of everybody and making sure that is included in some way. That way there’s not just one mold of ideas happening and it’s always going to be inclusive.”

Jones said EBONI wanted to embody the idea of bringing the model’s individual style to the fashion show, debunking the usual fashion industry standard of non-inclusivity.

Jmag creates sustainable and ethical fashion, utilizing natural dyes and recycled materials to construct her clothing. Her designs were showcased in the first half of the show.

“I like doing these kinds of shows because it’s a good way to expose my brand to young people [who are] part of my demographic,” Jmag said in an interview.

During intermission, Boston native rapper Cliff Notez interacted with audience members and performed songs such as “Masochists” off his last album Why the Wild Things Are.

After brief technical difficulties involving the microphone and sound system, the second half of the show focused on designs from Afrocentric designs and members of EBONI.

Freshman Leyla Said, a model on the show and EBONI member, said she walked the runway in an effort to support members of EBONI organizing the show.

“I wanted to support black organizations like [EBONI] that come together as black people on campus because there’s not a lot of us and we just have a safe place to go,” Said said in an interview.

Junior Skylar Figaro, a second-time attendee, said this year the organization went above and beyond their past efforts, making the show better than last year.

“Everyone got to put in their own personal styles, like when [the models] all first came up, that was for the most part almost all of them doing their own thing,” Figaro said. “I think it’s just so cool to involve everybody especially because it’s Black History Month.”