Liberty Fairs January 2015

Liberty Fairs burst on the trade show scene less than two years and already it feels like a heavy hitting game changer. Anchored on the cool that emanates from the insanely photogenic Freedom Hall section of the event, this menswear show feels hip, current and fun. Greatly expanded from our last visit last year, the show now includes three large wings as opposed to last year’s two. The event included a free coffee and liquor bar (positioned side by side), a pool table lounge area, plus a preview of a new publication by Grandpa Style‘s Ashley Owens called Suiting, an appearance by Rosario Dawson in support of her line, Studio One Eighty Nine, and portrait photography by John Midgley with creative direction by The Brooklyn Circus and styling by Scott Newkirk and Ashley Owens.

Much deserved credit is given to founder Sam Ben-Avraham (who founded Project, which he eventually sold to Advanstar), but it occurs to us that the secret sauce is because of co-owner, Sharifa Murdock, who is very much on the scene of each show and has imbued Liberty with a perspective and energy that feels efficient and organized and yet still wide-minded and even at moments, dare we say, utopic. Yes, she’s a business, man (!), but she’s also a black woman whose background clearly has given her access to an unusually diverse pool of talent that she uses to set a table at which a lust and talent for expressing creativity are the main cost of entry.

We now are gushing, we know, but we do not care because it’s appropriate. First, we have no official connection with the show, and more importantly, if you are deep in the world of fashion, you know how uncommon an inclusive perspective is and thus why it puts us over the (Liberty) moon to witness and experience it at this show. It’s a big thing, huge even and deserves its proper hat tip.

All images shot by Lois Sakany for TheSnobette.

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