• I posted about a fashion show I was in a couple weeks ago. I finally have a bunch of photos for your viewing pleasure. I realize this isn’t entirely on topic with wine, but it was a fascinating romp that I wanted to share with you.

    The event was in Oakland at a place called The Crucible.

    The Crucible is a 56,000 sq. ft. nonprofit arts education and performance space located in West Oakland. They offer beginner, intermediate and advanced classes in industrial arts such as welding, blacksmithing, fire performance, glass blowing, wood & stone working, kinetics, enameling, ceramics, sculpture, and more.

    Their unique public events blend these arts with gorgeous dance, music, theater and fashion performances designed to inspire creativity in everyone who attends.

    Bay Area fashion designers and industrial artists collaborated for months to bring together one-of-a-kind pieces of wearable art melding haute couture concepts with fine and industrial arts. This multidisciplinary performance featured first-ever public viewings of stunning, cutting edge looks, new staging, fire effects, and runways in their 56,000 sq. ft. West Oakland warehouse.

    We all got there Thursday for the trial run and some press photography. The models were from all different cities, so the clothing designer had to create the outfits without them being around. This day was to try everything on for adjustments, test out the fire toys, and traverse the skinny stage while holding aforementioned heavy fire toys.

    The show consisted of three sets with an intermission between each set. In each set there were three to four designers each with four to twelve models. Our group was the third group in the first set.


    Sophia and fan unlit

    Sophia side view

    Sophia front view

    Heidi 3

    Heidi bottom view closeup

    I was part of a duo, and Savannah was my pair. The two proceeding models in our set had a color scheme of gold/copper and silver. Whereas Savannah was just the silver aspect and I was the gold/copper. She led with a large forged aluminum parasol that had flaming discs that fanned outward when she twirled it.


    Savannah closeup


    detail of fascinator


    I followed behind holding her eight foot train with my right hand and the twenty pound iron parasol in my left hand (I’m right handed). The boots I was wearing had a near three inch lift, and the stage was very narrow. It was quite the trick to hold the increasingly hot, heavy iron, fire prop with my left hand while navigating the Fibonacci stage.


    Designer’s note: He was amazingly lithe and walked the stage as if made for it. The self assurance and awareness developed from years of wine tasting seems to have been the perfect segue for this kaleidoscope of an evening.

    From the central pillar and in the four corners shot off huge spurts of flame before and after each group. It was impressive.


    back coat detail

    Jonathan and Savannah 2

    jonathan fire

    train from below

    parasols rear images

    parasols left view

    Jonathan and Savannah 4


    Thankfully I didn’t impale anyone or set them ablaze. I had a wonderful time, and successfully walked the gamut to a roar of applause.


    Savannah and Jonathan promo photo


    Savannah did a costume change after our group. I was able to snap a picture…





    It was the third time (that I know of) that I was in the news. Once for wine reviews, and the other when I was eight years old.



    Here is the amazing cast of the production:


    silly group photo2

    group shot 1



    Fashion Designer, Producer and Creative Direction: Jennifer Remmers (View her website here, it’s fabulous)

    Metal Working and Designer: John Williams

    Models:  Heidi Helena, Sophia Constance, Savannah Lees-Haley, Jonathan Hood (me)
    Photos: Bas Tiele

    Makeup and Millinery: Katie Shanks