During the recent New York Fashion Week, some 200 celebrated designers such as Alexander Wang, Narciso Rodriguez and Michael Kors were joined by two Philadelphia University fashion design graduates who showcased their collections during the fall fashion extravaganza.
Kayla Donovan and Kristen Heun, who both graduated in May, were featured in the Emerging Designer’s Collective runway show Sept. 12 at New York’s Affinia Hotel. The designers were joined by PhilaU fashion design faculty and students in the New York Immersion program for fashion design and fashion merchandising and management students.
Donovan, who won the award for best senior collection at PhilaU’s Fashion Show in April, showed her collection called Visions of Tibet at the New York show. Donovan designed all the prints for the collection, which was inspired by Tibetan gods and goddesses and religious iconography associated with the culture.
“Showing at New York Fashion Week has always been something I wanted to do,” Donovan said. “Moments before the show when I heard the song I had chosen begin to play I had so many emotions all at once.”
Heun’s collection, which won honorable mention at the PhilaU Fashion Show, is entitled Neonomadic and was inspired by desolate landscapes and images of topographic maps. The looks included textured oversized silhouettes constructed from warm knits, cotton and linen. She hand-dyed fabrics to obtain a soft organic feeling.
Seeing her designs come down the runway at New York Fashion Week “was a completely unforgettable day that I am ridiculously grateful for,” said Heun, an assistant costume designer at Just Play in Newtown, Pa. “It was an overwhelming and exciting day that only intensified my passion as a designer.”