TAMPA, Fla. — Fashion week and the city of Tampa are not symbiotic — yet. Italian fashion designer Marcus Menniti is working to change that, and raise awareness for important causes at the same time.
"I just fell in love with Tampa and I think it's a huge opportunity with Tampa growing to really develop this industry here locally," Menniti said.
The up-and-coming fashion designer held his first show in Milan, Italy in February and is bringing that same energy to Tampa on Friday, October 20.
This will be his first U.S. runway show.
His ties to the area go back to his soccer days at the University of Tampa.
"I wanted to bring value to this city that has been so lovely to me and this community that has been very welcoming to me," Menniti said.
His designs are as unique as his mission.
Proceeds from his show will benefit three different human trafficking organizations: the U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking, Created Tampa, and the International Association of Human Trafficking Investigators.
"I had actually friends all over when you speak at the university a lot of college students that almost got in those situations," Menniti said. "If my designs and my brand I can use it to raise awareness to such a big problem I think it's for the right cause and I love to do that."
In an industry where anything is possible, Menniti is working to make sure that carries over beyond his designs.
Menniti plans to raise money for different causes with each runway show.
For information about this Friday's event click here.