Fashion Studies Student Winning Dress Design Now Available

Posted March 7, 2013 in Fashion Studies, Student

Student Athena Anger's Winning Design Now Available for Purchase

Program chair Lori Faulkner was thrilled when Fashion Studies student Athena Anger’s "Make it Zig" dress design won ModCloth’s Make the Cut: “Swatch It Up” contest.

“It comes across as playful and elegant and sophisticated all at the same time,” says Faulkner of Anger’s winning design.

Designed from a simple swatch of fabric provided by Mod Cloth and chosen by votes on Facebook, Anger won $500 and a sample of her design from the Pittsburgh-based online retailer, which makes and sells vintage-inspired clothing and accessories from indie designers.

"What is so sweet is that it hit the contemporary target for a design that adapts to multiple environments - or what we have been calling action fashion," Kendall President David Rosen says of the design.

The national recognition Anger’s design has focused on Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State University’s new Fashion Studies program has been very exciting, Faulkner admits, but it’s what happened next that’s far more important for Anger and the other students in the new program.

“Here’s the big deal. When you’re a designer you can manipulate a design to make it what you want,” Faulkner says. “But the production people need to figure out how to make it fit everybody at a specific price point and the sales people have to be able to sell it.”

That means changes (subtle sometimes and sometimes not so subtle) to the original design and that’s the collaborative process at the heart of both the fashion industry and Kendall’s Fashion Studies program.

“This has been a wonderful opportunity for Athena. Not only to win it, but also to go through this process,” Faulkner says. “And it’s also nice that she’s sharing the experience with everyone else in the program.”

Whichever of the many facets of the fashion industry Kendall graduates pursue as careers – manufacturing, trend forecasting, retail, set and costume design to name only a few – they will need to utilize the skills and talents of many others to realize their own inspiration.

Anger’s winning design and the process of putting it into production touched on every aspect of the fashion business industry veteran Faulkner wants her fashion studies students to embrace before they leave Kendall with a BFA in Fashion Studies.

Of working with Mod Cloth and seeing the finished product, Anger says, "I am very excited about the final product, it's definitely what I was looking for!"

The dress, which just became available and has already garnered rave reviews, is available at Mod Cloth. Designed to flatter all shapes and sizes, it will soon be available in sizes from XS - 4X. The retailer talks about the contest and design process and offers styling tips here.

"Learning design is also learning how the industry works,” Faulkner says. Classes at Kendall, guided visits to fashion centers in New York, Los Angeles or Chicago and a one-year Associate of Design Program at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City - not to mention seeing a project through from concept to sale -  give Faulkner’s students a flying start.

~ David LeMieux