Written by: Frances Connolly
LdM Fall 2014 Fashion & Study Abroad student
To have a theme as distinct as 50’s Haute Couture, and to not adhere to it directly but to effectively turn it on its head, nip it in the bud and reinterpret it, can be the work of only real designers. And that’s exactly what these girls are. That’s not even taking into account that these students customized their designs to be worn by LdM students; each design was so perfectly suited for each student’s individual look, resulting in a show that was as unique and diverse as the girls themselves. Talk about powerful! And the show was as professional as the real thing; everything from the elegant runway, to the poise of the models, there were several moments where I could have been fooled to think I was in New York or Paris sitting side-by-side Vogue’s Anna Wintour and Andrea Leon Alley. And really, I don’t think I would have been more impressed than I was. But, anyways, let’s talk smart clothes.
An undistinguished ball gown – whether black or white satin — would have been easy. But this is not what the designers did. Instead, they considered white strapless pants suits with draping sleeves (why not?!), mid-length coral knit and tulle fitted gowns, and a metallic empire style gown with white satin gloves to name a few. And they were able to do so while remaining largely honest to the signature 50 quirks of ultra-glamorous and ultra-feminine.
The fashion show accurately reflected the time, effort and skill the students have put into their work this semester; it demonstrated their ability to design a collection while developing and experimenting with their draping, sewing, embroidery, and knitwear techniques. LdM has effectively developed a program where their fashion students not only study how to design garments, but they provide them with the opportunity to produce garments in the real fashion world.
My reaction to the show was visceral – which is where a fashion lover can go when experiencing beautifully designed and expertly crafted clothing. So, bravo, LdM designers, bravo!