Omaha Design Center, The New Home of Omaha Fashion Week

Dust covers the floor as the sound of power tools can be heard in the background. This construction zone will be turned into the new home of Omaha Fashion Week in less than a month.

Omaha Fashion Week has been in many locations and fashion tents throughout Omaha and it finally has a permanent home, the Omaha Design Center.

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A sketch of the Omaha Design Center. (Courtesy of Omaha Design Center’s website)

Brook Hudson was the first sponsor of Omaha Fashion Week while working at the Creighton University College of Business. Hudson said Omaha Fashion Week Founder, Nick Hudson, approached the university to help reach a different demographic.

In 2011, Hudson became the producer of Omaha Fashion Week and says so much has changed since then.

“I think the biggest change is just the way the show has grown and it seems to have been legitimatized in our community,” said Hudson.

When Omaha Fashion Week started it was run out of Nomad Lounge, a bar and nightclub. It wasn’t until the event moved to KANEKO that it got people’s attention said Hudson.

“Now for us to actually move from being in others peoples’ venues to having our own venue, I think that adds just a even bigger layer of legitimacy and just creditability to what we are doing,” Hudson said.

Omaha Fashion Week has grown into the nation’s fifth largest fashion event as stated on their website.

“We’ve got some competition cause all these other markets in the Midwest are taking their cues from us and so we’ve got to stay on top,” said Hudson.

The 30,000 square-foot event space will be located in North Downtown stated on the Omaha Design Center’s website.

The Design Center will be much more than just a home for Omaha Fashion Week. It will be a place where designers can make fashion, show fashion and sell fashion, said Hudson.

“The biggest function is a place where we can showcase fashion,” Hudson said about the Omaha Design Center.

Hudson said designers will be able to have fittings, client meetings and trunk shows in the designer show room. Design Parliament will also be using the show-room.

Design Parliament works with high-end women’s wear designers, such as Dennis Merotto, Marie Saint Pierre and Kevan Hall. They go to markets in New York, meet with buyers and then send their sales team out on trunk shows.

“We’ll now have our own show-room where people in Omaha that want to buy those things can set up an appointment and view the collections,” Hudson said about the designer show-room.

Not only will there be a place for designers to showcase their collections there will be a place for designers to create their collections. Hudson said there is space set aside with machines to have a designer workroom.

“We’re really excited about having some resources there for designers to work with to create their collections,” Hudson said.

“The luxurious, flexible space can accommodate groups from 100-1,500 people,” stated on the Omaha Design Centers website.

Their website also states the venue includes a blank-slate event space, an art gallery and reception area, full catering kitchen, patio and both a bridal and groom’s suite.

The Omaha Design Center will be open to the public on March 15, which is the opening night of Omaha Fashion Week March 2016. There will also be a private event held on March 14 as a soft opening to show people around Hudson said.

Omaha Fashion Week is March 15-20 at the Omaha Design Center.

“I think we are just trying to become better and produce a high quality show, create an even better experience for customers and provide more economic opportunities for designers as well,” Hudson said.

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Brook Hudson, producer of Om attending Omaha Fashion Week March 2014. (Courtesy of Herb Thompson)

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