On July 13 at 5:30 p.m., 30 minutes before the show began, models were completing final preparations. As caterers decorated white-clothed tables with an array of colorful food and flowers, audience members entered the auditorium. Five minutes until showtime and all the seats were full. People sat on the grass for a spot to see the models. These models stood in line on the back stairs, glancing and waiting for their turn to walk into the outdoor auditorium.
This event is one of the many events that occur on campus. This particular show is marked as the Spring Fashion Show, differing from ones held in the winter and fall.
Apparel entrepreneurship, catering and events, applied plant science and the professional pre-school class made this event possible.
Jill Sutton, a sophomore studying apparel entrepreneurship, is one of the three event’s coordinators. While looking at the crowd of fashion designers, Sutton said, “There’s about seven classes in here all the way from the beginner sewing classes to the more advanced classes, so it goes from 207 to 490.”
Sutton said Avant Garden means to be fashion-forward, so it resembles something close to a garden party. Despite the theme, all of the clothing designers were able to choose and design their own work without a theme.
“These are most likely their favorite project that they made so far this semester,” Sutton said.
Genet Orme, a faculty member for the Department of Home and Family, paced between different sections checking on the food caterers, floral catering, security and more. Orme made sure the entire event flowed; something she has been focusing on since the beginning of this semester.
“We start planning for it (on) the first week of school,” Orme said. “We meet every Friday, and it basically takes all semester.”
Orme said the event is significant because it allows students to learn how to meet deadlines, budget their time and market their work. They have also been doing these events with catering and florals for five years.
“First of all, we are the only fashion design program in the whole church, and so we want to basically be a really good example,” Orme said. “And let them know that fashion can be very tasteful.”
Models walked to and from the auditorium, presenting their designs to the crowd filled with friends, family and curious passerby’s. Some of the models’ were children who are from the schools preschool classes. One little girl walked onto the stage wearing a ruffled three-teared pink dress, detailed with a white ribbon and hat. Another little girl came out in a loose, pink dress with yellow accents and a white headband, hopping and smiling as she went along.
Midway through the event, the sky darkened and clouds covered the sun. Orme worried the weather would worsen as it began to lightly sprinkle. Soon after, the sky brightened and the clouds lift from the sun. The event continued to a close and the audience savored refreshments under the sun.
The refreshments were popular with the crowd, so much that by the end of the event there was little to no food left.
Lori Chavez, a faculty member of the Home and Family Department, said the food that the class had decided to make consisted of kolaches, which is meat stuffed bread, along with a vegetarian option filled with cheese and mushrooms; brownies; mini fruit pizzas and Caprese salad along with a gluten-free and dairy-free option.
As the event came to a close, one of the apparel students showed the details of his designed coat to curious guests.
“I’m trying to make it into a natural coat,” said Sidney Ghelerter, a sophomore studying apparel entrepreneurship. Referring to the idea of using natural items such as kangaroo and horsehair.
Ghelerter held up his coat which is patterned with white and dark materials and accented with a hand-stitched Kangaroo fur collar.
The Avant Garden Fashion Show went down as a success, leaving the students to prepare for the next educational fashion show.