By Taylor Smith
One of the most anticipated events of the spring semester at the University of Wisconsin–Stout took place on May 1 and 3 in the Great Hall of the Memorial Student Center. The annual Silhouettes Fashion Show featured collections from 23 seniors in the Apparel Design and Development program and pieces from underclassmen as well.
The show opened with a video montage of the seniors introducing the name of their clothing lines, inspirations and effort put forth to make their collections possible.
With the bass of the music pounding, countless models strutted across the runway displaying collections and pieces from each designer. There seemed to be an earthy, organic trend in many of the lines, whose designers used floral patterns, fur and a color palette consisting of deep purple, hunter green and rust yellow. Many designers also used a lot of black and white, staying true to a monochromatic color scheme to accentuate texture and cut.
The presentation of awards began shortly after the initial show. Program director Dr. Gindy Neidermyer presented the student of the year award to Molly Spitzer, who designed a line of snowboarding gear.
“It is such a great honor, and I could not be more excited about receiving it,” commented Spitzer. “It is a great feeling knowing that my hard work and dedication to the Apparel Design program was recognized and appreciated.”
Spitzer is most proud of the unique aspects that went into her collection.
She said, “I wanted to ensure that I included the same sort of details that would be seen in typical snowboarding apparel, like the zippered pockets and vents as well as the extra things I added like unique fabric manipulations and reflective tape within the seams.”
It is perhaps because of this great attention to important details that landed Spitzer a job as an Assistant Technical Designer for Under Armour’s outdoor line in Baltimore.
Another big winner was Kelly Horak’s line that consisted of crème-colored knits and black leather. She took home the award for best sweater knit design.
The projector screens lowered and each of her models took turns holding a phone, which showed a live stream of them up close and their view of the audience as they walked the runway.
“I got the idea for the live stream video after watching Paris Fashion Week when Cara Delevingne videotaped from the runway in the Chanel and Fendi shows through a Fendi buggy key chain,” explained Horak, who worked with the MSC staff to make it happen.
She also gives a lot of credit to her four models who are her close friends.
“The chemistry they had and the fact that they really cared about my line and me as a designer made it that much more fun,” Horak said.
Horak’s hard work has landed her a job at Abercrombie and Fitch as an Assistant Technical Designer.
“I honestly don’t feel like I am done. It hasn’t hit me yet. It’s so surreal to have achieved so much in my short time here,” said Horak. “I would have never guessed my freshman year that this would be my final outcome of my senior line and that I would win two awards.”
Another success of the night was Lindsey Madden, whose line won best in show. She seems hopeful that her line still has room for growth and is inspired to do even more with it.
“It is extremely humbling and flattering. I have received so much positive feedback and support that it’s just overwhelming,” stated Madden. “It is really satisfying not only to receive recognition from people whom I respect, but also to feel proud of my work.”
Madden is happy with how the show and her senior studio class has prepared her for the future.
“Developing designs, bringing them to life and marketing your brand is very empowering. It’s helped me to bring an idea to fruition and has given me the confidence to pursue my aspirations,” said Madden.