Academy of Art University Graduation Fashion Show

Academy of Art University Graduation Fashion Show

BY: Sandra Ong

Last Thursday, May 5th, 22 of the top graduating fashion students of Academy Art University showcased their works at the annual spring fashion show. Out of the 16 collections featured at the fashion show, 7 were collaborations between fashion design, textile design, knitwear design, fine art sculpture and jewelry design students. All the elements of a spectacular show were present at last Thursday’s show. The lighting, the sounds, the electrifying energy of both models and the audience, and of course the clothes completed the whole vibe of the show.

It was refreshing to see many innovative designs and silhouettes at the show. The top three collections that stood out for me were the collaboration of Cynthia Tran and Kassie Moody, the gel like collection of Drew Williams and lastly the fun, poufy dresses of Brittany Burggraff and Wendy Tam.

The saying “Save the best for last” was very much fitting for the collection of Cynthia Tran/ Kassie Moody which was the last collection that showed at the fashion show.  Their inspiration behind their collection was Ludwig Bemelman’s Madeline children’s books and 1960s silhouettes. The thing that attracted me the most about this collection is how they utilized the very creative prints in the garment. It is extraordinary to see these engineered prints paired with very bold and somewhat geometric silhouettes.  It is also fascinating to see how the designers translated their inspiration which was from a children’s book to a very sophisticated looking collection. This ironic balance is for me one of the reasons why this collection was successful.

One of the most interesting and innovative collections from the show was Drew Williams’. The main reason why her collection stood out from the rest is because of the use of silicon .She had multiple inspirations for her collection—agarose gel electrophoresis, and Rudi Gernreich and Medical attire for the silhouette.  The blobbing sound of jelly that accompanied the spectacular clothes on the runway was very right on. It gave the audience a great sense of what the collection really is.

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Lastly, the final collection that is included in my Top 3 is of Brittany Burggraff and Wendy Tam’s collection. This specific collection was a great collaboration between a Fashion design and a Textile design student. The first thing you will notice about this collection is the voluminous poufy layers of the dresses.  The mixture of colorful prints is what made the collection appealing to the audience.  You can just see why the audience instantly picked up their cameras when the last two garments of the collection came out on the runway. People were drawn to the frilly layers of multicolored prints and the uniquely exaggerated silhouettes of the garments.

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After watching the student fashion show, I can’t help but wonder what could be the amazing opportunities these designers could have now that they have officially been introduced to the fashion world. One of the students had already caught the eye of an industry professional; Maggie Mo Luo, a Knitwear design student who also showed her work at the fashion show was chosen by Nathalie Rykiel of Sonia Rykiel as her intern at last Thursday’s VIP fashion show.


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