What a whirlwind. I just got back to my desk after my first senior fashion show jury, the defining moment when each garment gets a “yea” or “nay” from a panel of jurors, and I’m still trying to process everything I just saw.
It was a fabulous, adrenaline-fueled two hours of nearly 110 garments, and the anticipation of the student designers was palpable, even though they were busy preparing models off stage.
Seven prominent figures in fashion design, retail, and media made up this year’s panel of judges, including Connie Ballenger, owner of Leal Boutique in Upper Arlington, Elizabeth Busey, manager of design at Tween Brands, Kristy Eckert, editor of Capital Style, Rachel Lepp, female sweater designer at Abercrombie & Fitch, Cari Murnane, senior merchant for PINK (L Brands), Rebecca Perry, senior vice president of design at Lane Bryant, and Kathi Newton, vice president and store manager at Macy’s Tuttle Crossing.
Aside from the final runway show on May 9, the jury show is what all 23 designers have been anticipating since the beginning of the year. Each designer was allowed to show up to six garments, and the jury can select as many or as few garments as they’d like from each collection. There are no guarantees.
Jurors examined garments from head to toe as each model came down the runway, paying special attention to technical details—pockets, closures, waistbands—and taking careful notes along the way.
The show as a whole was packed with variety—nothing seemed to be off limits. Though I’ve been following the designers and their collections since last semester, there was something about the bright lights and music of the jury show that brought the garments to life.
All of the sudden, subtle themes emerged and collections came together. Some designers used color to unify their collections, while others turned to unexpected pairings of texture and pattern. Crop tops, mixed textures, and gold were dominant throughout, while capes, printed pants, and sheer overlays popped up several times as well.
Now we wait. Individual garments need at least four votes, a majority, to get into the show. Students will receive the jury’s notes later next week and I’ll be sharing the final list of designers with you as soon as I can.
Next comes the photo shoot (only a little more than a week away!), followed by in-depth interviews with each designer who will be represented in the final show. I’ll be asking lots of questions and sharing with you what inspires and drives each designer.
In the meantime, visit our event page to order your tickets before they run out (and I’m told that has happened). And designers, if you’re reading this, go take a nap!
The CCAD Fashion Show is an annual fundraising event that showcases the talent of graduating Columbus College of Art & Design Fashion Design Seniors. This popular event sells out every year and this blog is a portal through which to view the behind-the-scenes goings on.