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Issue 17 Out Now

Standing Tall in the Fashion Scene: Detroit Celebrating Indie Fashion Show at NYFW and Beyond



In the fast-paced world of fashion, independent designers and models often find it challenging to break through the barriers and showcase their unique talents. However, at New York Fashion Week (NYFW), a special event called “Indie Fashion Show” is changing the game. This annual fashion show, full of independent Detroit designers and models, is creating a runway made for everyone. In this article, we will explore the fascinating world of Indie Fashion at NYFW, highlighting the talented designers, the impact on the fashion industry, and the inspiring stories behind this empowering event.

The Birth of Indie Fashion

The story of Indie Fashion begins with its humble origins as a local clothing store in Detroit. This store exclusively featured independent fashion brands, providing a platform for emerging designers to showcase their creations. As the store gained popularity, the founders, Daishawn Franklin and Mercedes Gillard, recognized the need to expand their reach and support independent designers on a larger scale.

From Store to Runway

Driven by their passion for independent fashion, Franklin and Gillard transformed Indie Fashion into a full-scale production, taking their fashion show on the road to 16 different cities. This expansion allowed them to collaborate with independent brands from around the world, creating a diverse and inclusive platform for designers to present their work.




One of the most remarkable aspects of Indie Fashion is its commitment to supporting independent designers. Unlike traditional fashion shows, which often prioritize established brands, Indie Fashion provides a spotlight for up-and-coming designers who may not have the same resources or recognition. This inclusivity allows for a fresh and diverse perspective in the fashion industry, fostering creativity and innovation.




Models Breaking Boundaries

In addition to supporting independent designers, Indie Fashion also celebrates models from all walks of life. The traditional beauty standards often seen in mainstream fashion shows are challenged at Indie Fashion, as models of various sizes, shapes, and backgrounds grace the runway. This emphasis on inclusivity sends a powerful message about body positivity and self-acceptance.

The Annual Charity Show

One of the most significant events in the Indie Fashion calendar is their annual charity show. This event not only showcases incredible designs but also raises funds and awareness for a worthy cause. Each year, the show partners with a different charity, amplifying their message and impact through the power of fashion.

Monet Bartell: Carrying on a Legacy

Among the talented designers featured in Indie Fashion is Monet Bartell, whose story is particularly inspiring. As the daughter of the late Mel Farr, a legendary athlete and entrepreneur, Bartell is no stranger to success. However, she chose to forge her own path in the fashion industry, carrying on her father’s torch and making a name for herself. Bartell’s designs reflect her unique perspective and pay homage to her family’s legacy.

Partnering with the Fashion Club

Indie Fashion also believes in nurturing young talent and supporting the next generation of designers. Through their partnership with the Fashion Club at Martin Luther King High School, they provide a platform for young designers to showcase their creations alongside established professionals. This collaboration not only fosters creativity but also encourages students to pursue their dreams in the fashion industry.




The impact of Indie Fashion extends beyond the runway. By championing independent designers and models, this event challenges the status quo in the fashion industry. It promotes diversity, inclusivity, and creativity, inspiring other fashion shows and brands to embrace a more representative approach. Indie Fashion serves as a catalyst for change, pushing the boundaries and redefining the standards of beauty and style. Indie was rightfully awarded Fashion Show of the Year, alongside CEO Daishawn Franklin as the Fashion Innovator of the Year at the Detroit Fashion Choice Awards.


Indie Fashion at NYFW is a celebration of independent designers and models, providing them with a platform to showcase their unique talents, and Detroit’s celebration of a major accomplishment in fashion. Through their commitment to inclusivity, creativity, and empowerment, Indie Fashion is changing the face of the fashion industry. From the humble beginnings to a nationwide fashion show, this event is a testament to the power of passion and perseverance. As the fashion world continues to evolve, Indie Fashion remains a beacon of hope, inspiring a new generation of designers and challenging the industry’s norms.

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