2020 CCAD Fashion Show May 8 reveals new looks from top student designers

Mar 4, 2020
Model wearing streetwear look, Columbus College of Art and Design, 2020 CCAD Fashion Show

March 20, 2020: This event has been canceled due to the COVID 19 outbreak. The work of the Fashion Design students selected for the Fashion Show will be featured online as a part of Chroma: Best of CCAD later this spring at ccad.edu/chroma.

2020 CCAD Fashion Show May 8 reveals new looks from top student designers 

COLUMBUS, Ohio—Trends are about to be set Friday, May 8, 2020 at Columbus College of Art & Design, with LBrands presents: 2020 CCAD Fashion Show. This year’s fashionable fundraiser for CCAD student scholarships promises to be the hottest runaway ticket in town.
The show features contemporary collections from emerging designers who hail from all over the world, as well as from CCAD’s own backyard in central Ohio. Inspired by diverse themes, such as family heritage, the natural world, and streetwear, these new designers are creating looks like none other using custom-printed fabrics, glow-in-the-dark powder, and other materials. 

“I’m proud of our students’ success,” said Suzanne Cotton, Chair of CCAD’s Fashion Design program. “I’ve seen hundreds of students transform from first-year students into talented fashion designers. Now more than ever, these young professionals are ready to take on the world and transform an industry.”

This year, the annual juried event will include 55 looks created by 13 CCAD Fashion Design seniors and one first-year MFA candidate. Their collections range from size-inclusive women’s wear and sustainable fashions to high-end gowns and streetwear.

Columbus is a major influence on the worldwide fashion industry, in part thanks to CCAD students who go on to be the creative and innovative minds behind a number of major fashion brands. In fact, CCAD’s Fashion Design program has once again been named one of the top 25 fashion schools in the world by Fashionista. All proceeds from the 2020 CCAD Fashion Show benefit student scholarships.

“We’ve attended the event for years and always loved it,” said Brett Kauffman, founder and CEO of Kaufman Development, who with his wife Katie are co-chairs of the event. “It’s an honor to be involved; we love CCAD and this event. Katie and I are excited to support the next generation of artists and leaders in the creative economy.”

Meet the designers

Some of the student designers for the 2020 CCAD Fashion Show include:

Marissa Holt 
Every woman deserves to feel beautiful in what she wears, says Marissa Britt Holt, whose collection for the Fashion Show is titled, appropriately, Every Woman, and includes designs for women in sizes 8–20, and whose models represent a variety of ethnicities.“Everyone deserves to feel beautiful, and nobody should be told what they can or cannot wear,” says Holt. Her collection features pastels in silk wool, lace, and satin, and includes rompers, jumpsuits, and dresses. Since starting at CCAD, Holt’s style has evolved from bohemian ready-to-wear to designs that include more feminine and ethereal looks. “I can truly say I’ve found who I am as a designer and person, thanks to all CCAD has taught me,” she says.

Xuena Pu
After working many years in the fashion industry in China and moving to Columbus, Xuena Pu decided to become a designer and promptly enrolled in CCAD. For the show, she has created a look inspired by the simple, clean, and neat colors of nature, and reflected her sustainable fashion ethos. Drawing on her lifetime of experience, Pu used an ancient weaving technique in some of her pieces to showcase her skills. What’s more, she promises a big surprise evocative of her cultural heritage.“My grandmother and my mother taught me so many ancient Chinese skills, which is really a big plus for me now. I applied some of them to my collection‘s design, making the pieces really stand out. I would like people to fall in love with my collection and Chinese culture.”

Ariel Rapier
Sustainability isn’t the focus of Ariel Rapier’s collection, Wild ’n Blue but it is an important element in her designs, after working in the fashion industry and seeing first hand the amount of waste produced. With some exceptions, her materials are repurposed and biodegradable with natural dyes, and in some cases, wax gives the fabric a longer life. “I believe we can produce in more conscious ways in this industry, and I didn't want to contribute to the growing amount of waste created by the fashion industry,” she says. Rapier’s show of American pride includes taking items such as Army uniforms and blankets, American Flags and other materials and reworking them into something new, more functional, and on-trend.

Hannah Jarrell
Like several designers in the show, Hannah Jarrell was inspired by nature; however, the process she used to create her collection meant watching BBC’s Blue Planet to learn about bioluminescent sea creatures. Hannah used glow-in-the-dark powder to create the shapes and her own texturing techniques to get the look she wanted in her collection, Bioluminescent. Working with silk habotai, power mesh, tulle, and goose feathers, Jarrell draped the materials instead of patterning them, building an all-white, avant-garde aesthetic. What she’s learned from her creative process is not to take everything so seriously. Jarrell explains, “I stopped looking for inspiration and, instead, I would let inspiration find me.”

Natalie Deorio 
Natalie Deorio stretched herself in creating her Fashion Show collection, SWIM—But fashion. The lion’s share of the collection, which features swimwear and utility jackets, is made from waterproof spandex (plus neoprene, latex, and cotton canvas), which required her to practice new construction techniques and master different machines. “It was a huge learning curve for me, but now that I’ve learned it, I think it's a really good skill to have,” she says. Leading up to the project, Deorio has had a tailoring internship at Sofyano, a custom suit store, and also interned as a designer and technical designer at Pantheon Limited. At CCAD, she developed her personal style and learned a love for streetwear, which, along with utility trends, serves as inspiration for her new collection. 

Li “Lucy” Cui
With a background in engineering and business management, Lucy decided to pursue a career change to design clothing that connects traditional Chinese culture with modern trends in the fashion industry. Since starting at CCAD, she has become more confident in designing clothes for herself and, more importantly, for others. That self-assurance really shows in her new collection, Dark Night Ocean, which showcases high-end dresses made with luxurious fabrics like silk and organza in the green of the sea. “Looking back, my work has evolved significantly since coming to CCAD, and my goal is to design clothes for professional women to empower women and make them feel more confident in their workplaces,” Lucy says. While she had a great experience studying here, Lucy plans on returning to China to start her own business there. 


One of the many new looks created by Columbus College Art & Design emerging designers for the LBrand presents: 2020 CCAD Fashion Show on May 8. Designer: Ariel Rapier; Model: Jovaughn; Salaam Photo: Ty Wright

Media contact

Facts and info about the LBrands presents: 2020 CCAD Fashion Show is available at ccadfashionshow.com. If you need additional photos or more information about the show, contact Kim Schuette, Interim PR Director, at kschuette@ccad.edu.

About the LBrands Presents: 2020 CCAD Fashion Show

The 2020 CCAD Fashion Show—the most fashionable fundraiser of the year—will take place Friday, May 8, at CCAD’s campus. A VIP reception starts at 7 p.m., doors for general admission open at 7:30 p.m., and the runway show starts at 8:30 p.m., followed by a dance party. All proceeds benefit the CCAD General Scholarship Fund. For tickets and more information, visit ccad.edu/fashionshow.

About Columbus College of Art & Design

Columbus College of Art & Design teaches undergraduate and graduate students in the midst of a thriving creative community in Columbus, Ohio. Founded in 1879, CCAD is one of the oldest private, nonprofit art and design colleges in the United States. CCAD offers 12 BFA programs and two master’s programs in art and design that produce graduates equipped to shape culture and business at the highest level. For more information, visit ccad.edu