The Art of Fashion Gets Literal at MSU’s Fashion Week

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Fashion Week isn’t just for New York and Paris. This  month, students at Michigan State University (MSU) launch their own celebration of the art of garb from April 11 to 17.

The week-long event includes a Fashion Night Out, made possible through a partnership with American Apparel, a Senior Fashion Show at the MSU Union and others throughout the week, culminating in The Art of Fashion runway show.

The participating students are all members of the Student Apparel Design Association (SADA), with the exception of the Senior Fashion Show, taking place on Wednesday, April 14, which is open to all senior apparel and textile design majors.

“Each designer is extremely unique, and they are going to use a lot of different colors, textures and structure,” said Sarah Bach, a participating MSU apparel and textile design student.

For the Art of Fashion show, each student was assigned an artist as an inspiration and focus for his or her designs. Students could focus on a piece that the artist created, on the artist’s facial features, anything that they could draw inspiration from.

“It’s done by random selection, like Project Runway. Students are given that challenge and have to use that artist, or the art movement,” said Kendra Anderson, public relations chair for SADA. “It helps them think outside the box.”

Student designs do not mean amateur designs; the competition at Fashion Week is stiff. One of the participating students, senior Jillian Granz, who entered four pieces for Fashion Week, recently won a worldwide competition for creating an eco-friendly dress for director James Cameron’s wife, Suzy Amis, to wear at the Oscars.

“I honestly never thought someone from MSU would win, let alone me,” said Granz. “I think it’s great a student won.”

Granz’s designs were centered on the painter Mark Rothko.

“He does modern color field paintings with blocks of blues, browns and uses really interesting colors,” said Granz. “It worked out that we both kind of do that.”

Bach was assigned architect Frank Lloyd Wright to use as her inspiration and used the building titled “Falling Water” to craft her dresses.

“This would be a great way to see the young, fresh talent at MSU, and to support the students who are trying to bring fashion to the community,” said Anderson. “It’s a great opportunity to preview the future generations of designers.”


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Tags: american apparel, Fashion, fashion week, msu, runway show, student designs