Fashion district coming to Seattle?



Posted on May 3, 2012 at 5:40 PM

Updated Friday, May 4 at 6:01 AM

SEATTLE -- The rain is the sountrack to Seattle's runway - fashion forward giving way to what's practical.

But designer Marta Kappl says forget what you've heard about Seattle fashion. Seattleites just need what other big cities already have - a fashion district.

"It has all the makings," said Kappl. "There's no reason for it not to be."

Think New York's Seventh Avenue on Seattle's First Avenue - Kappl has already gotten the ball rolling. In her Belltown studio, designers learn the craft, how to run a business and how to make it all work here.

"The access to Belltown is so great. It's fun and it's alive!" said Kappl.

Kappl came up with the idea after seeing how successful Tom Douglas has been with his restaurant ventures. Douglas is cultivating young chefs and she thought, why not do the same for designers?

"It's hard to compete with the Amazon's of the world," said Douglas. "So it's going to take smaller and smaller micro businesses to fill up these spaces offering unique products."

Kappl said she's inspired by the previous fashion eras in Seattle.

"There used to be a huge fashion industry here and there still is to some extent. Designers just need a model to help them sustain," she said.

With six fashion schools in the area, Kappl said there is ample ground. And like food, Kappl said people need fashion. She believes her idea will be a new way of giving it to them.

"Somebody has to do it. Why not me?" she said.

Kappl and Douglas are holding a "Haute Cuisine meets Haute Fashion" on Friday, May 4, beginning at 7 p.m. inside of the Palace Ballroom. Douglas will serve locally sourced food and Kappl will showcase some of Seattle's up and coming designers. Tickets are $15.

To purchase tickets, go to the Brown Paper Tickets website.