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CCAD Students Take Cues from the Masters of Design

Melanie McIntyre Melanie McIntyre CCAD Students Take Cues from the Masters of Design
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The Columbus College of Art & Design 2011 Senior Fashion Show, titled “Masters of Design,” was held Friday night at the school’s Design Studios on Broad and this year’s graduates did not disappoint.

The show, which kicked off at 8:30 p.m., featured two looks from each of CCAD’s 25 graduating seniors, all inspired by the fashion industry’s best and brightest− from American legends, like Ralph Lauren and Geoffrey Beene, to European icons, like Elsa Schiaparelli and Valentino. The students didn’t simply send knockoffs of yesteryear’s greatest hits down the runway, though; each look was clearly influenced by the designer’s taste and vision.

For instance, the short frock with a form-fitting bodice and pouf skirt by Joscelyn Wiggs was obviously a nod to ‘80s-era Christian Lacroix, but Wiggs made it her own by using a polka dot-floral print combination that was dramatic yet wearable.

One of my favorites was a silk dress with an asymmetrical hemline by Quintessa Dionne Goodley, who said she was inspired by Emanuel Ungaro’s love of color. However, Goodley’s creation had a simpler shape than the French designer typically favored in order to emphasize its print− a vibrant mix of lime, aubergine, and light and dark blues.

Having attended the CCAD Senior Fashion Show for a few years now, I eagerly anticipate the moment “the showstopper” −the piece that makes you gasp a little because it seems like the work of a seasoned pro− makes an appearance. Last night’s showstopper was, in my opinion, the black and white, floor-length evening gown by Janell Clemente.

In the wrong hands, lace appliqué and row upon row of handsewn ruffles could be the makings of a fashion disaster, but Clemente wisely kept the silhouette simple and timeless. She plans to work for an upscale bridal company after graduation− appropriate for someone who looked to Alexander McQueen for inspiration, as the label designed perhaps the most photographed wedding dress of the decade (the one worn by Kate Middleton, now the Duchess of Cambridge).

Despite the usual big tent, bright lights, and appearances by local celebrities (Columbus Mayor Michal Coleman sat front row), this year’s show had a distinctly different vibe.

I’m guessing the show’s djs, AndrewAndrew, looking like hip dandies in matching light pink suits, baby blue shirts, and orange bow ties, and the fact that it was a Friday night (rather than Saturday afternoon) affair had something to do with that.

I also noticed more smiles on the faces of audience members −who uncharacteristically let out cheers when something, or someone, particularly fantastic graced the catwalk− than in years past.

Though I was wearing uncomfortable 4.5 inch heels, I left the venue with a spring in my step. The supreme talent and creativity on display at CCAD fashion shows never fails to inspire. My advice: buy a ticket next year. You’ll be glad you did.

To see more runway photos from the show, click here.

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