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Every year, for the last decade or so, the magazine staffers and I laugh at—and fret a bit about—the cruel joke that Charleston Fashion Week (CFW, March 14-18) always arrives on the heels of Charleston Wine + Food (March 1-5). I mean really—just a week after stuffing ourselves with all of the tasty bites, vino, cocktails, and more at the Culinary Village, not to mention the gourmet fare at the Signature Dinners and the killer barbecue at the final event, we’re stuffing ourselves into our finery for five nights of runway shows and mingling with visiting celebs and designers and the see-and-be-seen crowd under the tents in Marion Square. Fortunately, in helping our colleagues publish the event program (CFW is owned and produced by our bosses at GulfStream Communications) and in preparing for our spring fashion feature, we spied many soft, flowy silhouettes that may make that transition a little easier this season!

In the garden of the Thomas Rose House and (above) with the crew at the shoot for our spring fashion feature, “In Full Bloom

Get a peek at the trend towards gorgeous, ultra-feminine florals in “In Full Bloom”. For that feature, associate style editor Quinn Sherman culled an array of garments covered in a profusion of blossoms, as well as jewelry and accessories, all from local shops, and photographer Peter Frank Edwards shot each look at the beautiful, and so very Charleston, Thomas Rose House. Our big thanks to Cathy Forrester for letting us take over her family’s home and amazing garden for two days—and to Mother Nature for giving us springtime weather in the midst of January. Considering we’re typically shooting spring fashion under 40-degree skies, we sure got lucky!

This issue is chock-full of fashion, from the feature and CFW program to a profile on fashion philanthropist Katie Walters of Francis + Benedict . But a favorite, I have to admit, is the Flashback on Mrs. Freida Sokol. I met the statuesque octogenarian while modeling with her at the Ronald McDonald House’s annual Bag Lady Luncheon last fall. What style, what grace—she certainly taught me and the other volunteer models a thing or two! I’m sure you’ll see her at CFW along with her fashion designer daughter, Pauline Sokol Nakios, who is showing her Leo & Sage Fall 2017 line on the runway this month.

See you under the tents!