Fashion Denver owner Brandi Shigley encourages others to do just as she is doing: "Focus on your focus."
That's what she was doing at Saturday night's closing party for Fashion Denver, the boutique at 1070 Bannock Street. That space will no longer be a shop; instead, Shigley and three other entrepreneurs will be turning it into No. 150, a spot where they can conduct meetings and help others "do what they love, and love what they do," says Shigley.
Even though she was closing the shop, the evening was far from somber. In fact, it was just the opposite: a lively celebration. Shigley whipped out a hula hoop and a pair of rollerskates, allowing her free spirit to glide effortlessly through the party.
Friends and Denver fashionistas gathered to wish her the best of luck on her new ventures while listening to the beats of longtime Fashion Denver collaborator DJ John. Hpnotiq, which sponsored the event, provided blue and violet cocktails; Tyler Marshall, the owner of Fluff*, a new bar at 1516 Wazee Street, mixed drinks and served as bartender for the guests.
"It's really fun to see all of the friends of friends of Brandi," said Joel Prada,an Art Institute of Colorado fashion design student. "We are all of her arms and legs connecting to each other. It's cool to see us all interact and mingle."
Even without a shop, Shigley will have her hands in a variety of creative endeavors, including writing a book, Chronicles of a Dreamer and Doer. She will again be in charge of the Fashion Pavilion at the Denver County Fair, set for August 10-12 this year at the National Western Complex; she also will coordinate the third annual Frock Out at the Denver Public Library on April 19, and has already selected a dozen local designers to participate in the event.
Many of them were at the closing party, including Katie Wells, owner of Giddyup! clothing.
"I love that Brandi is having a closing party, but it's not like she is going anywhere!," Wells said. "She is still involved in everything and I wish her the absolute best."
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Shigley is also organizing a spring/summer fashion market (date and location to be determined) that will be her thirtieth market since 2004. "Each market brings in new designers, and it's really inspiring to see our local fashion scene expand," she said. "Denverites are unafraid to be the individuals they are. Fashion is variety here, and everyone creates their own look."
While it's bittersweet to lose one of the Denver Independent Boutiques, or DIBS, if last night's shindig is any indication, the best is yet to come from Shigley, a member of the first MasterMind class, as she continues to push herself and inspire others. As she told the crowd near the end of the party, "Tonight is a celebration for all of us becoming dreamers and doers."