The long runway, dazzling lights, and stunning clothing designs are just one side of the acclaimed ISU annual Fashion Show. While it’s true that spectators from all corners of the state (and some from out of state) pack CY Stephens Auditorium to nearly sold-out crowds of 2,500 each year, there is much more to the Fashion Show than meets the eye.
The Iowa State Fashion Show is produced entirely by students. From press releases to stage lighting, students from any major can apply to work on a The Fashion Show. It’s been called the “ultimate leadership challenge” by some, but the hard work, long hours, and feat accomplished are well worth it.
While The Fashion Show is a much-anticipated event to the Iowa State campus community, the event is much more than one night of glamour and excitement. Throughout the year, various committees are working within the Ames and Iowa State communities to connect with citizens and alumni.
Alumni judges and designers
Many alumni of The Fashion Show have gone on to have successful careers in design, production, and merchandising. Each year, four alums of the program are asked to be guest judges for the garments. Their real-world expertise is invaluable, as they give student designers critique and encouragement.
What’s more, each year, The Fashion Show invites a guest designer to be a part of the show festivities, including giving presentations to high-schoolers for Behind-the-Scenes day, interviews with campus newspapers and magazines, showcasing original designs for the runway show, and more.
The Fashion Show has been fortunate enough to draw from a pool of talented alumni to return to campus for the event. In the past, Iowa State has hosted these fine designers:
- Matthew Christopher, CEO, chief designer, and creative director for Matthew Christopher, Inc., a couture bridal fashion house and manufacturer in New York City and Iowa
- Todd Synder, former Vice President of Menswear Design for J.Crew and co-founder of Tailgate Clothing, Co.
- Mansoor Amjed, a designer for women’s wovens at Marc by Marc Jacobs
- Katherine Noyes, designer for her own women’s clothing label
- Kristine Eikenbary, head designer for both Flip and Seduis
- Marck Marcellus, CEO and head designer for The Denim Factory
- Hannah Leavell, women’s wear designer for Vineyard Vines
- Jerod Harmon and Derek Huenecke, footwear designers for Vans, 2014 graduates of Iowa State’s industrial design program