'The Settlers of Catan' Meets... High Fashion?

This past weekend, there was something very unexpected at the Chicago Toy & Game Fair. To say it's not very often that the worlds of hobby gaming and high fashion collide is an understatement (I'm still waiting for the "Project Runway" "Monopoly" board challenge), but as ChiTAG celebrated it's 10-year anniversary, the PlayCHIC fashion show provided some unique sights. The show featured "haute couture designs created by some of the city's top designers that are inspired by cool toy, game and entertainment brands like the UK sensation Moshi Monsters, the nerd-chic hit board game Settlers of Catan, and the vintage comic strip heroine Brenda Starr."

Yes, that's right. Now you too can dress up like a settler from Catan. Admittedly, the finished product from designer Miriam Cecilia Carlson is different from the internet's previous Catan-inspired fashion statement:

According to Mayfair Games, Carlson was trying to bring out "the game’s spirit of hope, adventure and play to life on the runway." Take a look and judge for yourself. For an island couple that survives on wood, sheep, wheat, bricks, and ore, these two look pretty stylish:

There was also an appearance on the runway by Mayfair Games president Larry Roznai, although we don't have photographic evidence and can't share what sort of island garb he sported.

"Settlers" is even getting hip to modern lingo, releasing the "Frenemies of Catan" scenario. No, this isn't "Catan" meets "Mean Girls," it's a mini-expansion that invokes a kinder, gentler "Catan" (while reminded you that this is still, after all, a free-for-all competition). In "Frenemies," players will be rewarded with special actions and abilities in return for helping out other players. They can earn bonuses such as free roads, preferential trades, and more by donating resources to players in need, connecting other player's roads, or moving the robber away to desolate locations.