KSU Fashion Week celebrates students’ creative designs | Local News

Kent State University’s annual fashion show is a week of events, speakers, runways and more. Presented by the KSU School of Fashion, the show highlights the “outstanding talent” of KSU’s fashion design and fashion merchandising students, according to Hillary Stone, non-tenure track professor, industry liaison and internship coordinator.

As fashion week director, Stone told the Cleveland Jewish News it’s a collaborative effort between faculty, students, the fashion industry and School of Fashion Director Mourad Krifa.

“The whole concept of KSU Fashion Week is actually to celebrate our community at the School of Fashion,” Stone, a congregant of B’nai Jeshurun Congregation in Pepper Pike, said. “That means celebrating every year – our first years, sophomores, juniors, seniors and our graduate students.”

It’s very exciting to see what the first-year students create, Stone said, because the “energy and excitement” is incredible.

On April 23, there will be a virtual fashion show to feature “experiencing fashion in the digital landscape,” Stone said, with digital runway.

The Schroth Lecture Series, featuring editorial fashion photographer Pauline St. Denis, will teach students how to take photography and use the imagery and story to promote a product.

“Pauline has been a photographer for over 25 to 30 years,” Stone, a Shaker Heights resident, said. “She’s known for her fashion photography, working with celebrities in New York. She does high luxury, high fashion, mass markets. She’s also worked in film and her specialty and expertise is really telling the story through photography.”

Also in attendance as the hall of fame inductee is British designer Dame Zandra Rhodes, also known as the “princess of punk.”

“She’s a pioneer in the fashion industry,” Stone said. “Her expertise is with color and print, and she brought the fusion of textiles and pattern. … She has designed clothing for Freddie Mercury, Barbra Streisand, Princess Diana, Diana Ross, so many celebrities (and) she was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II.”

The student designers are phenomenal, Stone said, and there’s an array of different types of designs throughout the multiple fashion shows.

“What’s exciting is you’ll see evening wear, mass market market-ready wear, athletic wear (and) sustainability,” Stone said. “What’s really interesting about our students is that they’re very conscious of what they do. They’re conscious designers and they’re very mindful and present.”

Stone said the students’ ability to understand fabric manipulation, knit design, digital printing and using different technology platforms to produce their collections is extraordinary. Attendees, she said, can expect to see menswear, womenswear, gender-neutral and plus-size clothing, as well as formal and casual wear.

The entire show is student-run, Stone said, which is “fascinating” because everything from production to design is created by students.

“I would say the concepts start the year before for everything, we’re all thinking of a concept,” she said. “Slowly but surely, when fall comes, the logistics start. Then, when it hits spring, the students are all working (and) they’re going full-steam ahead.”

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