Students’ Passion, Creativity and Talents Shine at Jefferson Fashion Show

The FIA Award for Best in Show went to Dalton Wade Reidenbach for this piece in his "Bawdy Opulence" collection.

The FIA Award for Best in Show went to Dalton Wade Reidenbach for this piece in his “Bawdy Opulence” collection.

Students lit up the runway with stunning and diverse collections at the University’s Annual Fashion Show on April 26.

With inspirations ranging from the beauty of mermaids to 1960s Miami glamour to wildlife in Kenya’s Nairobi National Park, 127 student fashion designers showed more than 300 head-to-toe looks at the Moulin at Sherman Mills in Philadelphia. The show, produced by the student Fashion Industries Association and its president, fashion merchandising and management junior Lauren Vastano, featured unique collaborations between fashion design, textile design and industrial design students.

“When our students leave here, they are skilled—and they are industry ready,” said Sheila Connelly, director of the fashion design program at Jefferson (Philadelphia University + Thomas Jefferson University), adding her students inspire her every day “with their open hearts, boundless curiosity and compassion for one another and for the world around them.”

Alana McHugh's "Convolution" collection won the Nexus Learning Award. She worked with textile design students A. Zarinah Nuri, Emily Olsen and Ji Young Park.

Alana McHugh’s collection won the Nexus Learning Award.

Chancellor Stephen Spinelli Jr. proudly noted that employers and graduate schools hire and enroll Jefferson students at a 96 percent rate and the University’s learning approach, expertise and student success have led the Business of Fashion and Fashionista to rank Jefferson among the top fashion programs globally.

“Tonight, you will see the ambition and the potential for making a better world through our human-centered, design-thinking focus,” Spinelli told the sold-out crowd. “That process requires acute thinking and skills—and a deep sense of empathy.”

Fashion celebrity Carson Kressley H’13, honorary chair and University trustee, called it a privilege to interact with Jefferson’s talented, dedicated and passionate students.

“You’re in for such a treat, and I must say, Jefferson has never looked so good,” he said to the more than 1,100 cheering students, family members, fashion industry leaders, media, area fashionistas and University faculty, staff and trustees.

On the runway, the audience saw a wide variety of women’s, men’s and children’s looks created by sophomores, juniors, seniors and graduate students. From NBC10, Bill Henley served as emcee and Katy Zachry provided commentary for each design.

Alexandra Pizzigoni received the FIA Award for Best Senior Collection with “Memory Space.” (See full award list below.) Luxe fabrics and unconventional materials informed this collection inspired by interior spaces and inanimate objects. Supported by the Eileen Martinson ’86 Fund for the Undergraduate Capstone Experience, which helps to defray the cost of fabric and other materials, this collection was a collaboration with textile design students Sivan Ilan and Regan Marriner.

Alexandra Pizzigoni received the FIA Award for Best Senior Collection with "Memory Space."

Alexandra Pizzigoni received the FIA Award for Best Senior Collection with “Memory Space.”

The FIA Award for Best in Show went to senior Dalton Wade Reidenbach for a coat in his “Bawdy Opulence” collection, where the carefree and risqué fashions of the 1920s came to life with sequins, ostrich feathers and brocade. He received support from the Eileen Martinson ’86 Fund as well.

The juxtaposition of white and vivid hues alludes to the creative internal battle of the mind in senior Alana McHugh’s “Convolution” collection, which earned the Nexus Learning Award for a collaborative design initiative and received funding from the Eileen Martinson ’86 Fund. She worked with textile design students A. Zarinah Nuri, Emily Olsen and Ji Young Park.

The whimsical and romantic “Over the River and Through the Woods,” a collaboration of fashion designers Danielle Frere and Lex Sado and textile designers Nina Nickerson, Jessica Butler and Nina de Vasall, explored what life might have been like behind the pages of a French fairytale. They won the Stuart Weitzman Award for Excellence in an Eveningwear or Bridal Collection.

At the Fashion Show, renowned shoe designer and entrepreneur Stuart Weitzman received the Jefferson 2018 Spirit of Design Award, which is presented to an individual who has had a significant influence on design and design education. Due to a family emergency, Weitzman couldn’t attend the event in person; however, alumnus Philip Kodroff ’82, former chief financial officer for Weitzman’s company, accepted the honor on the designer’s behalf.

Weitzman’s iconic shoe designs, including the Nudist sandal and 5050 boot, have been worn on the red carpet by such celebrities as Beyoncé, Angelina Jolie and Taylor Swift, as well as by the merely fashionable in 75 countries around the world.

Fashion celebrity Carson Kressley H'13 called it a privilege to interact with Jefferson’s talented, dedicated and passionate students.

Fashion celebrity Carson Kressley H’13 called it a privilege to interact with Jefferson’s talented students.

Kodroff said Weitzman’s success was due to his “secret sauce,” including manufacturing practicality, comfort, quality materials, affordability and keeping the line fresh and new every season.

Another honoree was Kate Kibler ’97, vice president of North America direct-to-consumer business at Timberland, who received the Alumni Award for Leadership in the Fashion Industry. The University established this distinction to acknowledge alumni industry leaders actively engaged in the Jefferson community.

“As you enter your career, I encourage you to be bold,” Kibler urged the students. “Take risks. Evolve and change with the industry. Really embrace what’s out there. This is one of the most fun, fulfilling, exciting—and exhausting—careers you can ever have.”

Student winners at the 2018 Annual Fashion Show included:

CARSON KRESSLEY AWARD
Most Ready for Retail
Kelsey Fickes, Collection One

COATES BROTHERS CLOTHING AWARD
Excellence in Workmanship and Quality/Senior Collection
Tiffanni Hinds, Collection Two

COLLECTION XIIX AWARD
Collaborative Textile Design for Womenswear
Lexie Kline, Collection One
Patricia Lemke

DESIGN EXCELLENCE AWARD
for Innovative Shapes and Silhouettes in a Senior Collection
Alexandra Pizzigoni, Collection Two

DESTINATION MATERNITY AWARD
Design Excellence in a Sportswear Collection
Alyssa Manna, Collection Two

FASHION DESIGN FACULTY AWARD
Excellence in Design
Lea Paul

FIA AWARDS
Best of Show
Dalton Wade Reidenbach
Best Senior Collection
Alexandra Pizzigoni, Collection Two
Best Senior Collection, Honorable Mention:
Keren Espina, Collection Two

JOAN CALABRESE AWARD
Design Excellence in Childrenswear
Carly McAndrew

LI & FUNG AWARD
for Design Excellence by a Junior
Allegra Pronesti
Honorable Mention:
Katelyn Adamson

MIKE TERNOSKY OBEY AWARD
for Most Creative Collection
Yee Fang Ho, Collection Two

NEXUS LEARNING AWARD
A Collaborative Design Initiative
Alana McHugh, Collection Two
Emily Olsen
Jiyoung Park
Zarinah Nuri

NICHOLAS LOUIS PALUMBO AWARD
Design Excellence in Menswear
Carly Brisach, Collection Two

SCHOOL OF DESIGN AND ENGINEERING AWARD
Outstanding Senior Design Student
Patricia Corine Franklin

STUART WEITZMAN AWARD
for Excellence in an Eveningwear or Bridal Collection
Lex Sado and Danielle Frere, Collection Two

THE EVELYN AND PAUL KNUDSEN RED DRESS AWARD
for Excellence by a Junior
Vanessa Fath

THE WOOLMARK COMPANY AWARD
for Textile Innovation
Lex Sado, Collection Two
Nina de Vassal

UNITED FABRICS AWARD
Original Jacquard Textile Design
Emily Olsen for Alana McHugh’s Collection One

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Jefferson received the following sponsorships for the Fashion Show:

EVENT SPONSORS
Fox Rothschild LLP
Donna Nicoletti Ferrier ’80 and Joseph J. Ferrier Family
160over90
Li & Fung

STUDENT TICKET SPONSORS
Matt Dane Baker
Charles DiMaria
Thomas Fung
Handsel and Karen Minyard
Penny Wise Thrift Shop
Jennifer Rhodes ’96

AWARD SPONSORS
Carson Kressley
Celia Frank and Anne Hand
Coates Brothers Clothing
Collection XIIX
Destination Maternity
Fashion Design Faculty
Fashion Industries Association
Joan Calabrese
Li & Fung Limited
Mark A. Sunderland
Mike Ternosky
Nicholas Palumbo
School of Design and Engineering
Stuart Weitzman
The Woolmark Company
United Fabrics

The student fashion designers showed more than 300 head-to-toe looks.

The student fashion designers showed more than 300 head-to-toe looks at the show.

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