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A hidden gem of Louisville: KMAC Couture

While Louisville is known for its many things such as the Kentucky Derby, the Hot Brown sandwich, the Louisville Cardinals and Jennifer Lawrence, much like other cities, Louisville also has an immense group of individuals who are extremely talented. With fashion week wrapping up, I thought it was a great time to talk about one of the coolest events in Louisville: KMAC Couture.

KMAC Couture was created as a fundraising event for the KMAC Museum. KMAC Couture has a mission that connects with the KMAC Museum to promote the connections of individuals to art and the practice of creative skills while featuring and supporting up-and-coming and well-established artists, designers and costumers. This small event created in 2012 has now become one of the largest high-profile events to attend during Kentucky Derby season. The show includes hairstylists, photographers and, of course, designers. This event represents an extremely diverse group of participants from various communities around the city.

In previous years, the program has had over 50 artists represented who also participate in an 8-month mentorship program. A lot of these participants are first-time artists and high school students. In previous shows, designers have used unconventional materials such as balloons, newspapers, glass, plastic bags, candy, vegetables, and so muchmore that make their pieces unique and absolutely stunning as the model struts down the runway. These pieces are guaranteed to leave your jaw dropping and wanting more.

For the 2021 show, KMAC Couture will have 34 artists showcasing their work including Maddie Mattheu, a student at the University of Kentucky. The other 33 participants can be found here. For more information about KMAC Couture and KMAC Museum, visit

Photo details for slider above are as follows:

Photo 1: “GAIA.” Artist: Kris Pettit. Model: Katya Estes. Photography by Events by Gary Barragan.

Photo 2: “My Megan.” Artist: Lillian Chodyneicki. Model: Nicole Whitaker. Photography by Gary Barragan.

Photo 3: “We, The People.” Artist(s): Abby Mobley, Maddie Donohue, London Cornell, Rebecca Donohue. Model: Lindsay Thomas. Photographer: Events by Gary Barragan Photography.

Photo 4: “Quilting Together Forever.” Artist: Wende Cudmore. Model: Willa Pettit. Photographer: Events by Gary Barragan Photography.

Photo 5: “Angel of the Cosmos.” Artist: Ayodeji Lasisi (Pictured right). Model: Alicia Antonia. Hair: Elise Sheldon for Drybar. Makeup: Jessie Conaty. Photography courtesy Gary Barragan.

Photo 6: “Delilah Wears Samson.” Artist: Karen Stout. Model: Brooklyn Tomilson. Photographer: Events by Gary Barragan Photography.


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