Models strutted their stuff on a brightly lit U-shaped runway Friday night, wearing works of art — handmade outfits designed and created by Virginia Tech students.
The Fashion Merchandising and Design Society’s annual fashion show took over the stage in Squires Student Center’s Commonwealth Ballroom Friday. The theme this year was Celestial Couture, which revolved around the governing cosmos and zodiac signs.
Eleven designers compiled a varied collection of garments, ranging from everyday wear to nightlife ensembles. An intricate Yupo paper backdrop enhanced the clothing on the runway.Her brightly
Besides their collections, designers faced another task involving the Celestial Couture theme.
“Each designer had to make a challenge garment that goes along with the lines of their own zodiac sign and how that transitions into their personal style,” said Christie Bradshaw, the fashion show coordinator and an apparel, housing and resource management major.
Three judges analyzed the garments, including Mary Woodall, the owner of SewAttitude Sewing Instruction & Design Studio in Blacksburg. As a basic sewing instructor, Woodall’s critiques focused on each design’s construction.
She provided advice to all designers.
“Learn to sew, sew a lot, try everything you can and never take no for an answer,” she said.
The winners received a certificate and the chance to feature their garments at 310 Rosemont in Blacksburg. The store will host a live model party to celebrate and showcase the winners’ work.
Senior Mary-Elise Jennings won best overall designer, and sophomore apparel, housing and resource management major Kelsey Dominick was the challenge winner.
Cassie Lintelman, a freshman apparel, housing and resource management major, also participated in the show. She was recently offered the first student FMDS scholarship.
Her collection consisted of seven brightly-colored pieces. The last piece that was worn and shown on the runway was a reconstruction of her mother's wedding dress.
“I based it off of my personality, and I’m supposed to be part outgoing and part shy,” Lintelman said. “So I had a simple dress with a lot of eccentric details to combine the two personalities.”
The only freshman designer in the show, Lintelman was excited to showcase her work. She hopes to learn from each fashion show and progress over the next few years while working with FMDS.
FMDS has spent the last few weeks rehearsing the show.
“This is our biggest event that we do, and the people that get involved put all of their hard work into it and it’s finally paid off,” said Anav Kernus, the vice president of publicity. “It’s been a great success, and I am so proud to leave FMDS with this amazing event.”
The show gives students the opportunity to learn more about this small 115-member society.
“A lot of students probably don’t even know that there is a fashion major here,” said Sara Kohart, the Banquet and Fashion Show Coordinator. “They can see how talented their peers really are.”
FMDS will be featuring its fashion show on VTTV, providing students who missed the live fashion show with a chance to see it again. VTTV is owned by Educational Media Company at Virginia Tech, the Collegiate Times’ parent company.
The society opens its arms to anyone who has a passion for fashion.
“You can be an architect, engineer, guy or girl and it doesn’t matter,” said Jordan Lobik, senior and president of FMDS.
Whether students have an interest in designing, planning or even working for the backstage crew, FMDS has several ways to get involved. The fashion show is a change of pace.
“It’s a large scale event for such a small society and there is nothing like it on campus at the moment,” Lobik said.
Besides planning fashion shows and banquets, the society provides many networking opportunities based on the available trips members can go on. In fact, in the next few weeks, members will be headed to Atlanta for the America’s Mart to help with Market Week, which is where all the buyers go.
Besides the last trip, FMDS will tie off the year with elections in about a month. FMDS will begin to plan for next year’s fashion show immediately after officer transitions.
Those interested in learning more about FMDS can check out its website at fmds.org.vt.edu.