As the feature piece of the event, juniors in the fashion design program created 24 red pieces for display. First-year students created paper dresses for the entryway of the nancy Cantor Warehouse while second-year students acted as tour guides for community members participating in the event.
Leading the charge from the fashion design program was Kirsten Schoonmaker, assistant teaching professor for fashion design. For her fall semester course, Fashion Design Studio III, all designs turned red for A Red Dress Affair.
Not only were these dresses created for an important cause, they challenged students in ways they hadn’t been challenged before. This was the first time their dresses would be on display, viewed by the public.
The students had 12 days to design and create their first dress. Sheila Xu ’20 and Kalthom Aljiboury ’20, both students in Schoonmaker’s course, welcomed the quick, albeit daunting, challenge and viewed it as preparation for the “real-world.”
“This process was really helpful because we were not designing in our own bubble. Connecting the design to the community and learning what they wanted to feel made the assignment more exciting because we were doing something for the community and saw our pieces on somebody. The difference we were making to increase heart health awareness was the inspiration,” says Xu.