The Fashion Institute of Technology held its annual end-of-year runway show titled, showcasing 73 of its graduating students’ collections. This year, the event was hosted by model Ashley Graham and honoured fashion icon Karlie Kloss, and designer and FIT student Victor Glemaud.
The Future of Fashion Celebration and Honors celebrated students’ outstanding work who were each informed by their own personal stories to inspire their designs. The FIT event’s offering spanned over 4 categories – intimate wear, knitwear, special occasion and sportswear – which were taken on in an unconventional, innovative manner.
Intimate wear saw the students elevate the genre by reinterpreting the underwear as outerwear. Notably, Mary Ray, who was awarded with a Critic Award, created a corseted gown for the “Queen of Gotham”, a fictional character she created who would rule over Batman’s city. Inspired by the butterfly, Ray used a blue silk chiffon embroidered all over with the insect to create the long train which, when held up, bears the shape of a butterfly.
A recently popular method of design, knitwear gave students the opportunity to re-examine and re-interpret the classic garment-making process. Jennifer Ho went nostalgic with her green-toned knitted dress paired with a turtleneck mohair scarf to represent the fleeting nature of childhood bliss while Veronica Creed’s “Dark Room” collection looks at photography from the past to inspire her bulbous dress and knitted cable bodysuit.
Special occasions are always an exciting category, with the possibilities being limitless on how to take it on. Long-train gowns and lots of tulle could be seen, as on Amanda Zanetti’s work which included a blush-pink lace dress with a layer of pleated tulle sprawling across the dress’ upper half. Keanu Williams took a completely different approach, creating a series of sculpted gowns decorated with braids, beads and pearls.
The last group was one of the most explored of the night, with students using elements of sportswear to create looks for every occasion. A standout look includes Raystter Alves who turns to motocross to design a two-look collection, one with a white denim maxi skirt and bustier and the other with motor-trousers with zipper detailing on its upper half. Vanessa Gray, who was also rewarded with a Critic Award, used upcycled materials to showcase the ephemeral nature of beauty in a series of patchwork dresses.
With students hailing from 4 different continents, 11 different countries, and exploring a wide variety of themes from sustainability to gender fluidity, FIT is incubating and training the next generation of designers who will radically change the industry.
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