Erin Habes, a 2003 graduate of the Buffalo State College Fashion Technology Program, with a degree in fashion merchandising, began her career in NYC as an intern for a women’s fashion footwear company. Within one year at the organization, she was promoted to a toplevel position as a sales executive. Excelling in sales and merchandising, she grew the company substantially.
After several years in the corporate world, Erin was ready to return to her roots in Buffalo, in pursuit of building her own retail business. In the fall of 2005, Sweet & Dirty was born. An award-winning “lifestyle” boutique, Sweet & Dirty become a destination for locals and those in nearby markets.
In fall 2007, Buffalo Sate College invited Erin to teach as an adjunct professor in their fashion technology department. While running a small business and teaching, Erin acted as a fashion consultant with several local and national fashion companies. Wishing to turn her focus to teaching and consulting, Erin closed her retail business in May 2008.
Erin wished to integrate Buffalo’s fashion industry into her classroom, and succeeded in raising awareness of the program in the community. The Runway, first held in April 2008, was based on the collaboration of students from Erin’s fashion show production class and David Brinson’s senior project class. Held at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, it was featured as a Gusto at the Gallery event.
Its overwhelming success spurred the collaboration between the Burchfield Penney and the Buffalo State Fashion Program to create Runway 2.0, further connecting the world of fashion and art. In addition to The Runway series, Erin is the producer and director of the Elmwood Village Association’s annual Mass Appeal fashion event and fundraiser.
To keep her fingers in the retail world, Erin is the manager and women’s buyer for Krudmart.com, a Buffalo-based web site and retail store in Allentown. Krudmart is a high-end streetwear boutique that features men’s and women’s clothing and accessories. As a message to all her fashion students, and in the words of Project Runway’s Tim Gunn, “Make it work.”
Visit Erin’s Sweet & Dirty Blog to see additional up-to-date postings on the upcoming RUNWAY 2.0 show.