Haute couture featured at RU Fashion Fête


Model Beth Keibel in dress designed by Sammy White – winner of Career Wear Category.

Haute couture was on display at the spring Fashion Fête, the annual showcase of work by students in the Radford University Department of Interior Design and Fashion (ID&F).

The Fête, formerly known as the Spring Fashion Show, was full of cutting edge clothing design modeled by student volunteers. The event was emceed by RU alumna and former Board of Visitors member Nancy Artis '73.

The tradition of showcasing senior fashion designers and juried pieces by fashion design majors continued at the show. The two students exhibiting their senior collections were Rachel Frantz and Lindsey Fox.

Frantz’s line was titled "Syreni," which means mermaid in Latin. The clothing was inspired by her recent aquatic experiences in California.

"My scuba diving adventure allowed me to experience up close and personal interactions with some amazing creatures, and from that, I was able to translate some fishy features into my senior project," Frantz said. "I was most inspired by gills, dorsal fins and the movement of stingrays."

Fox aimed to use her collection to showcase a sophisticated, vintage look for the modern woman. Of her target audience she said, "She is a professional aged 25 to 40 who wants to appear fashion forward while maintaining a classic air to her wardrobe. I was inspired by the timeless silhouettes and fabrics of the 1940s and 1950s."

Fashion Fête award winners

Fashion Fête award winners

Also during the show, the awardees of the first Nancy Artis Junior Fashion Design Scholarship Competition were revealed and modeled by Artis herself. Both she and her husband selected the scholarship winners. These are: Thomy Owens, first place; Ashleigh Wells, second place and Hannah Waldron, honorable mention. Students worked on designs beginning in September 2013 and the gowns were made during this semester.

The first and second place winners received $2,000 and $1,000 respectively with the funds going toward tuition or to incidental expenses related to successfully completing their degrees. The honorable mention award was $500.


Model Emily Burnette in dress designed by EmilyAnne Chares.

A juried portion of the Fête centered on selected pieces from sophomore to senior fashion design majors, whose identities remained anonymous to the selection committee. The jury was comprised of alumni from the fashion design program at RU who are currently working in the industry in New York, Los Angeles, Charlotte, N.C., and Columbus, Ohio.

The Fashion Fête coordination is a collaborative effort between merchandising for design majors and faculty members Farrell Doss and Tammy Robinson, who provided guidance and instruction for student organizers.

"They learn about fashion show production and all of its component parts. They gain practical experience in the production of the show by modeling the design process used by their fashion and merchandising faculty to complete specific tasks," Doss said.

Apr 2, 2014