Las Vegas Fashion Designer Works with Fashion Students on Las Vegas' 1st Cruelty-Free Fashion Show and Event

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Las Vegas fashion designer and fashion instructor Julia Szkiba O'Connor has organized a group of her students, along with established cruelty-free and eco-friendly fashions, in forming a committee for "Faux Rocks", an evening of compassionate fashion, to be held in Las Vegas on Saturday, November 18, 2006

Fashion designer and instructor Julia Szkiba O'Connor has been working with a team of her students in organizing "Faux Rocks!" a fashion show and event celebrating compassionate fashion.

Senior students at the International Academy of Design & Technology in Henderson, Nevada, are currently working with faux furs and other animal-friendly fabrics, some of which has been donated by Sommers, Inc., a fabric company specializing in these types of fabrics, as well as bamboo fabric from Bamboo Apparel. The event also has the endorsement of PETA, who has been guiding a helping hand for this project.

The event will also consist of showcasing fashions and accessories from established eco-friendly/cruelty-free companies such as Ah-nee-mahl Shoes, Mink Shoes, So Mona, and many others. The date has been set for Saturday, November 18, 2006. Initially, it was to be held at a new, local nightclub just off of the Vegas Strip; however, overwhelming response from the eco-friendly community has been so great, that a new location site is in the works.

O'Connor, adjunct professor at the International Academy of Design Technology and a fashion designer, is responsible for teaching students about the alternatives that are available in fashion. "Most students are unaware of the number of animals that are killed, unnecessarily, for a single coat, as well as not realizing the harm chemicals used to process some of these skins can create for the environment. I am just helping others realize that it is time to open their eyes to everything around them, and to become educated designers."

"There hasn't been an event quite like Faux Rocks! in this town; Pamela Anderson had an event back in February 2005 at the Palms Hotel to launch her cruelty-free line, but that was more for VIP and industry people. Faux Rocks! is for everyone, including the general consumer, animal-lover, fashionista, store owner, merchandiser and buyer, and so forth."

O'Connor has been a compassionate fashion designer her entire 15+ year career, and continues to work within the industry by designing cruelty-free and eco-friendly fashions as a freelancer for a variety of companies such as children’s wear, womens wear, juniors and more. "I don't see the need to use real furs, leathers or other skins in apparel or accessories; we have too many great, man-made fabrics and components to work and design with, so not investigating all of the choices out there is not being a responsible designer, in my opinion."

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