“I knew it was going to take on a life of its own,” says Kathy Jensen, owner of the store An Affair to Remember, about her annual fashion show.
For years, Jensen was asked by others to put on a local prom fashion show and for a few years, Jensen said, it was something she saw in the future but not at that time. Now, 14 years later, Jensen is putting on the 13th annual prom fashion show. This year’s theme will be “A Girl to Remember,” which has been a sort of slogan or tagline for her store.
“We always wanted to do it,” she says about the theme. “We said, ‘What is a girl to remember?’”
The show will take place on January 6th at 7 p.m. and last for about two hours at the Crown EXPO center. The event is open to the public.
“I would say, it’s a great girls' night out,” Jensen says. “You don’t have to have somebody in the show to enjoy it. You get to see the new fashion that is coming out.”
To be in the show, Jensen says the only requirement is to have purchased a prom or pageant dress from An Affair to Remember. Girls in the show will be for those ages 7 and up.
“This is all about women’s empowerment,” she says. “Every time you get up on the stage, your confidence builds.”
To that end, the show will also host a portion called Women of Power. This segment of the fashion show focuses on women in the community that have made positive impacts. They will also be dressed up and walking on stage during the show.
Jensen felt that the efforts of many women in the community were not showcased and often would be done without much notice.
“I just started looking around Fayetteville and seeing all these women doing great things,” she says.
She hopes the segment will change that. The “Women of Power” will walk two times during the show. The show will have about 100 models this year.
They have had anywhere from 20 to 120 in the years prior. The models will be anywhere from a size triple zero to 30.
“When I started the show it was about 20 girls and they were mostly beauty queens,” Jensen says. “ .. and it just grew. I decided if anyone has bought a dress from me they are going to be able to do the fashion show.”
For Jensen this show will be about empowering women, giving back to the community through donations to CEED and about giving back to her customers by allowing them to participate in the show without any other financial commitment.
“It has turned into a tradition,” she says. “I have girls that started out at 7 and 8 years and now they are seniors in high school. It’s just what we do."
Joining the folks at An Affair to Remember will be Next Top Model Judge, Marian Verrkerk, who will direct the runway show as well as pageant coach Bill Alverson and Jovani designer Julie DuRocher.
Jensen urges anyone who wants a girls' night out or who would enjoy watching a runway show to come out to enjoy drinks, food and vendors as well as the show.
“You will feel like you are in New York at Fashion Week … with more comfortable seating,”Jensen laughs.
“It’s a night of fun.”
For more information, visit An Affair to Remember's Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/lifeisanaffair/