Fashion Design students create dazzling holiday window displays

Providing students real-world learning opportunities is a key component of a CCAD education. This fall, 12 students in Assistant Professor Audrey Nicolas’ Intro to Fashion Design class had the chance of a lifetime—to create four holiday window displays for Easton Town Center, the no. 1 retail center in America.

“The partnership between Easton Town Center and CCAD to create holiday window scenes by Santa’s North Pole was the perfect opportunity to allow fashion students to get creative and awe our guests at Easton,” says Jennifer Peterson, Chief Executive, Easton. “These beautiful window displays are really a nostalgic look back to the days of department store displays we enjoyed as kids. Now, guests at Easton have the chance to see these works of art in celebration of the holidays.”

For the monthlong project, students were divided into four teams and were tasked with creating concepts, pitching their ideas to visual merchandising professionals and other Fashion Design students and alumni, and bringing their visions to life. The designers utilized recycled materials such as ornaments, garland, tulle, wrapping paper, and other donated fabrics. They drew inspiration from their holiday memories, films, research on silhouettes, and high-end designer runway looks.

“This was an amazing, hands-on learning experience for students to showcase their creativity as well as represent CCAD and the Fashion Design program,” says Nicolas. “It was commendable how the students were able to incorporate their own imagination in the holiday window displays while keeping in mind the Easton concept and aesthetic.”

Chair of Fashion Design Suzanne Cotton says the teambuilding aspect was one of the most important parts of the project. “Not only did the students create some really beautiful and festive window displays, but the project helped them get to know each other better. It also helped them develop their skills in working together as a team, problem solving, and time management—all things that will be vital in their upcoming careers as fashion designers. Knowing that this was going to be seen by a lot of people upped the pressure on the students, and I think they are all really proud of the work they have done.”

Allison Whisman (Fashion Design, 2025) says the chance to showcase her work as a first-year student was a great opportunity. “I really appreciate the freedom we were given for this project,” Whisman says. Kayla Walker (Fashion Design, 2024) says the tight timeline was a challenge for everyone, but it was a rewarding one.

“Making these fashionable dresses and backdrops takes hard, focused work from everyone involved,” says Walker. “For all of us, seeing something we worked on being displayed to the public for the first time in our careers is not only exciting, but it’s a dream come true.”

See the holiday displays created by CCAD students at Easton (4140 The Strand) for yourself now through the end of December 2021.

CCAD Prepares Students For Careers

You can find our alumni using their creative skills in small businesses, multinational corporations, nonprofits, and even in such fields as banking, healthcare, and insurance.